Worldwide: Global online travel agency Booking.com has partnered with world-class quality assurance platform Properly to introduce its minimal cleanliness score commitment, which requires alternative accommodation providers to commit to a minimal cleanliness score, re-affirming its commitment to prioritising traveller health and hygiene.
Based on active guest feedback, only properties which live up to this cleanliness quality over time will remain available for guests to book.
Through the program, Booking.com will support alternative accommodation partners as they commit and work to improve and maintain their cleanliness score, as determined by verified guest reviews from travellers who have booked and stayed at the property. Partners who commit to improvement will receive detailed resources and guidance, including access to Properly’s best-practice cleaning protocols, available to download for free on Booking.com’s Partner Hub or within Properly’s app.
Custom checklists, which are available in 30 languages, are designed to give partners easy-to-implement directions to meet guest expectations for cleanliness.
Developed in conjunction with Booking.com, the exclusive content draws on customer feedback from verified guest reviews to create straight-forward and actionable guides to help improve guest experiences. The resources also draw on Properly’s extensive experience providing quality management frameworks for successful property managers and hosts around the world.
Additionally through the partnership, Properly will offer Booking.com partners an exclusive discount on access to its suite of apps to implement best practices, centred around a “simple-to-use” mobile app that allows hosts to distribute, monitor, verify and certify the use of standard operating procedure protocols.
Booking.com partners are also able to find qualified cleaning providers through Properly’s global network of service providers.
Properly founder and CEO, Alex Nigg, said: “As many travellers begin to choose alternative accommodation for the first time, it has become even more important that they find quality and comfort. We are proud to have been selected by Booking.com as their partner in this dynamic program to support quality assurance in its alternative accommodation offering.
“A recent survey of Properly partners found that when hosts are provided with long and complex protocols, the result is often low compliance. With this highly targeted and responsive program, Booking.com focuses on those partners that can most benefit from help and provides them with tools to help them succeed,” he added.
In order to guarantee the highest possible level of hospitality and hygiene for anyone who books accommodation through its platform, Booking.com has asked its partners to commit to a minimal cleanliness score of six out of ten.
A property’s cleanliness score is an average of the cleanliness review scores providers receive from all of their guests, offering an indicator of the comfort they provide guests. Any property that fails to meet the cleanliness standards will be notified and put on a warning list, which encourages providers to improve their score.
Eric Bergaglia, global head of Booking.com’s homes and apartments business, said: “Cleanliness and comfort have always been important factors in a great stay, and today even more so than ever. With use of the words ‘clean’ and ‘hygiene’ increasing by over 60 per cent on our platform since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, and alternative accommodations representing one third of all new bookings during the third quarter, the introduction of our minimal cleanliness score commitment reflects our continued commitment to ensure traveller peace of mind.
“Alongside other key product updates made this year to make it simple for properties to navigate evolving traveller preferences, we are excited to work with Properly to bring this tailored support to alternative accommodation properties as they commit to improve their cleanliness score,” he added.
The partnership between Booking.com and San Francisco-based Properly is an expansion of a pilot program between the pair that began pre-pandemic in November 2019, and which was announced back in April. The pilot was introduced in order to enforce stricter quality and safety standards to help operators navigate the pandemic, with cleanliness and sanitisation standards increasingly coming under the microscope.