Would you be surprised to find only continental breakfast available at Holiday Inn Express hotels when the brand advertises hot breakfast items such as pancakes, scrambled eggs, and bacon on their website?
A reader sent us a copy of an announcement left in their guest room at a Holiday Inn Express hotel in the UK.
You can access IHG here.
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The Entire Note:
The upper part of the announcement dealt with the fact that this hotel apparently doesn’t have an AC.
Only Continental Breakfast:
The lower part was about the new and exciting trial, undoubtedly for the hotel owners that wish to cut costs, about the move to only continental breakfast at this specific hotel.
Here’s the essential part of the text:
We are excited to announce that we are now part of a new continental breakfast trial that is complimentary for all guests. The offering is slightly different to other Holiday Inn Express or what you have seen us do here before.
As we are on a new trial, we would appreciate all guest feedback.
We were in touch with IHG, which didn’t want to comment on this subject and whether they plan to roll out this “enhancement” to all Holiday Inn Express hotels worldwide.
Hot breakfast is vital to many guests, and IHG has strongly promoted this as part of the Holiday Inn Express experience. It would be quite a drastic move to move to a motel-style breakfast with some stale cold items instead of a full hot breakfast.
UPDATE: What makes this trial more fascinating is that the corporate was heavily promoting Holiday Inn Express to the press in June:
Fresh, hot, and serving up morning favorites – Holiday Inn Express encourages guests to enjoy breakfast their own way
The comeback of travel has meant the return of one of hospitality’s most beloved offerings – the hotel breakfast. Now, as the summer travel season kicks off, Holiday Inn Express, part of IHG Hotels & Resorts, is reminding travelers across the U.S. and Canada that when it comes to a hot, fresh, complimentary breakfast – nobody does it better.
The largest hotel brand in the world is spotlighting its Express Start breakfast through July 15 with a new marketing campaign, created by ad agency Dagger, and airing across streaming platforms like Amazon and Roku, social media channels including Instagram and Tik Tok, as well as playing in movie theatres ahead of summer blockbusters.
IHG Hotels & Resorts worked hard and fast to bring breakfast back safely. The company also considered what consumers wanted with the return of breakfast and conducted tests at select hotels between November 2020 and March 2021. Guests were not only eager to have a breakfast buffet back but expressed desire for more variety. So, in addition to classic favorites like pancakes, cinnamon rolls, eggs, bacon and cereal, healthier options like Chobani yogurt and oatmeal with toppings were added to menus.
Stephanie Atiase, Vice President, IHG Hotels & Resorts and Global Brand Head for Holiday Inn Express, said: “The pause in breakfast was just that – a pause. Not only are we offering the breakfast favorites our guests enjoy but we’re doing so with added safety measures and increased menu options. It plays such a critical role in the Holiday Inn Express experience, and we’re proud that our Express Start breakfast continually receives such strong guest satisfaction scores. Since our hotels successfully deliver on breakfast every day, we’ve invested in a U.S. and Canada media campaign that we’re sharing across multiple channels, celebrating the great breakfast combinations our guests love.”
Since launching more than 30 years ago, the promise of a fresh, hot, and complimentary breakfast has been a part of every Holiday Inn Express worldwide. And as the brand grew, so did menus, varying from region to region and including the flavors of the surrounding community (like chilaquiles served at properties in Mexico and dumplings served in China). At hotels in the U.S., the brand’s one-touch pancake machine is hugely popular (especially with kids!) and is available at more than 2,300 properties.
There are more than 3,000 Holiday Inn Express hotels around the world and nearly 650 properties slated to open in the coming years. Holiday Inn Express is in some of the most traveled places in the world and with its Express Start breakfast it gives busy guests a guaranteed satisfying start to their day.
Many choose some of these select service hotels since they offer complimentary hot breakfast to all guests.
The hot complimentary breakfast has been the cornerstone of the Holiday Inn Express brand. It would be very drastic to discontinue this and move entirely cold prepackaged items.
I hope that guests who come across this and other similar trials let the management know how displeased they are and book elsewhere on future visits to the area.