The hotel industry is far from what it used to be. Hotels were purely about the comfort of a room, where people happily came back after a tiring day of sightseeing around an unfamiliar city. Nowadays, thanks to the invention of low-cost airlines, business travel has become so popular that hotels have almost as many business guests as the leisure guests, depending of course on the location. This means that hotel guests are now beginning to view their room not as a luxury, yet as a sanctuary. Thus, hotels have reacted to this demand and have begun to offer a range of services to suit guests’ needs. Among them is the offer of films before they come out on DVD.
This is called the “early window” service, which offer hotel guests the opportunity to see films albeit after their release in the cinema, yet before they come out in the rental stores. It is a joint venture through the company Filmbank in cooperation with Warner Brothers and Sony Pictures, which has brought these films to hotel rooms during the so-called early window period. The films appear on offer in hotel rooms about 10 or 12 weeks after their release.
The scheme looks certain to be a revenue winner as consumer research has shown that this is the sort of thing, which business people want to see. One third of the business people who took part in a survey claimed that they would buy a film in a hotel room. Nearly two thirds of travellers say in-room entertainment influences their impression of a hotel. An incredible 70% of them said that they would like to know more about the films before their stay.
It is, however, clear that this scheme needs a certain element of marketing, as many guests are still unaware of its existence. There is, however, no reason why it would not be a success.