How Robots are Changing the Hospitality industry  

By Sanjeev Kumar


The hospitality sector in India is experiencing remarkable growth, poised to hit a market size of USD 120.4 billion in 2024. To stay ahead, hotels and restaurants are increasingly turning to automation, integrating autonomous robots into their operations. These robots are reshaping the guest experience and streamlining tasks throughout the industry. 


Gone are the days of long queues at hotel reception desks. Now, autonomous robots handle check-in procedures, allowing staff to focus on personalised service. Studies have shown that a significant number of guests appreciate the efficiency and convenience of this automated process. Additionally, some restaurants are experimenting with AI-powered chatbots, offering round-the-clock assistance to diners, from recommending local dishes to facilitating basic food orders. 


The dining experience itself is transforming with the introduction of autonomous robotic waiters. These efficient servers navigate dining spaces, delivering dishes directly to tables. Imagine a sleek robot smoothly manoeuvring through the restaurant, gracefully avoiding obstacles to serve up your favourite dishes. There’s an ongoing exploration into robotic chefs, promising precise and speedy preparation of specific dishes, which could potentially revolutionise fast-food service. These robo chefs are still in their early stages, but they hold the promise of consistent quality and efficiency in kitchens with high turnover. 


Hospitality is a sector where guests greatly value the warmth and personal touch that human interaction provides. For this reason, it is important to integrate robotics in a manner that adds to the holistic experience, while taking full advantage of their benefits. By automating the tasks that robots excel at, human staff are free to concentrate on guest satisfaction. Hotels can leverage robots for repetitive duties like housekeeping or luggage delivery, allowing employees to focus on creating unforgettable experiences. Similarly, in restaurants, robotic waiters can handle basic deliveries, allowing servers to provide diners with personalised attention and recommendations. 


By strategically incorporating autonomous robots, the hospitality industry can elevate the guest experience in several ways. First, automation improves efficiency and reduces wait times. Guests checking-in or ordering food will experience quicker and more efficient processes, freeing them to explore the hotel or enjoy their dining experience sooner. Second, robots ensure consistent quality when it comes to repetitive tasks. For example, a robotic housekeeper can maintain a high standard of cleanliness in every room. Finally, robots free up human staff to focus on what they do best: providing exceptional service and creating a welcoming atmosphere. This human touch remains paramount, and robots are unlikely to replace it. Instead, robots serve as valuable tools that can enhance the overall guest experience when used strategically. 


(The author is Sanjeev Kumar, Founder, Alphadroid, and the views expressed in this article are his own)