Aloft Hotels has rolled out Text it, Get it—room service at the speed of emoticons.
Aloft Hotels have started their newest service Text it, Get it (TiGi for short), which allows customers to use emojis to order room service. In-room menus now feature six specific packages, each with a specific string of emojis attached. A text message downstairs containing those emojis orders the package with no actual words required for the exchange.
What started as simple keyboard hacks in the 1990s has become a legitimate second language, and businesses like Aloft are beginning to recognize and capitalize on this. It makes sense, especially for hotels, since they do business more frequently with people who might not speak the local language. Emojis happen to be language-independent communication. Though reading the menu to see what each emoji string represents and costs still requires some English, an out-of-country guest wouldn’t have to try speaking on the phone (generally considered one of the most difficult feats in a non-native tongue because you can’t gesture or read facial expressions).
The emoji order options run a wide range of offers. A (very) incomplete list includes a snack pack, ordering a wake-up call, making a noise complaint and pre-ordering breakfast. They also offer a variety of quirky combos. The Hangover Package includes vitamin water, pain relievers and bananas while the Pizza Party will bring you pizza and beer at any hour of the day or night. Traditional ordering via a human voice is still available for all of the items on the emoji menu.
Aloft Hotels have implemented their emoji menu at all locations in their chain. At present, the emoji options represent just a portion of what’s available from each hotel, though they plan to expand the program if it proves popular.
Text and images via psfk