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The power of inclusion: How hotels transform the experience for people with autism.

The importance of autism in hotel management: Promoting inclusion and exceptional service.

Hotels can offer unique experiences to all guests, regardless of their needs and abilities. In this context, it is essential to recognize the relevance of autism in the hotel industry. Understanding the different needs and the adaptation of people on the autism spectrum are essential to improve the quality of service.

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a condition of neurobiological origin that affects the configuration of the nervous system and brain function. - Autism Confederation Spain

The top three work areas should be:

  1. Promote inclusion

Creating an inclusive environment in the hotel improves access to people on the autism spectrum. For this, personnel with training must be made aware of the autism characteristics and specific needs and prepare operations with practices that can make a big difference in the quality of the service offered.

It is also relevant to have quiet and adapted spaces. These less stimulating areas can provide a safe space for guests on the autism spectrum. These spaces can be designed to reduce sensory overload and offer additional comforts such as soft lighting, tactile materials, and a selection of visual stimuli.

2. Improved customer experience

Adapting the hotel's operations to the needs of people on the autism spectrum, significantly improves the customer experience, therefore affecting guest satisfaction and loyalty.

During the stay, it is crucial to ensure clear and concise communication to autistic guests can enhance their experience. This can include detailed information about the rooms and their features, as well as recommendations on local activities suitable for different needs. It also plays a fundamental role that the staff is trained and attentive.

In Spain, 750,000 people have the opportunity to choose a hotel where they understand what Autism Spectrum Disorder consists of and feel comfortable. There are hotel chains that are firmly committed to adapting their spaces, such as Hotels with the Autism Friendly Seal, as demonstrated by the following report from Televisión Canaria:

Autism Friendly Club are a group of professionals from the social field who have launched this initiative called #AutismFriendly with which we intend to identify and certify accessible spaces and environments for people with autism.

The initiative has become a Quality Seal that identifies spaces that meet requirements in terms of:

  • Signage: They identify the spaces to adapt them with the placement of pictograms so that the environment is better known and familiar to people with autism.

  • Training: They organize training days for workers onsite or online.

  • Protocols. They have designed specific protocols at the time of the reservation that has to do, for example, with the possibility of making a priority check-in or other adaptations in meal times (it does not alter the usual hotel operations).

Subsequently, they deliver the identification in Autism Friendly Quality Seal format and incorporate the establishment on their website, as an Autism friendly certified environment and as a member of the club so that families know that there is a new one (the website works as a Guide for Families).

For more information contact Alberto

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