In Brief

WeChat teamed up with InterContinental to create a digital-first hotel in Shanghai that allows guests to check in remotely, use their phones as key cards and even order breakfast via mobile, eliminating the need for human help

The WeChat app is incredibly popular in China, particularly for offering customers the convenience of frictionless payments. The InterContinental Hotel in Shanghai is partnering with the app to design a fully digitally enabled hotel where customers can access almost any service via WeChat.

Using just their phones, hotel guests can book their suite, check into their room and open the door via a digital access card on the app. Since Chinese hotel rooms require a photo ID, WeChat and parent company Tencent developed facial recognition software that allows for even faster check-in.

The app can be for more than just booking and accessing the room, however: “Through WeChat, travelers can also order room service, make payments, set air conditioning in the room and adjust curtains and lighting,” enabling a truly digital-first experience. WeChat plans on expanding its hotel services over the next year.

WeChat | InterContinental Shanghai


Lead image: WeChat app on mobile phone stock photo from Kaspars Grinvalds/Shutterstock

The WeChat app is incredibly popular in China, particularly for offering customers the convenience of frictionless payments. The InterContinental Hotel in Shanghai is partnering with the app to design a fully digitally enabled hotel where customers can access almost any service via WeChat.

Using just their phones, hotel guests can book their suite, check into their room and open the door via a digital access card on the app. Since Chinese hotel rooms require a photo ID, WeChat and parent company Tencent developed facial recognition software that allows for even faster check-in.