Digital hotel rooms keys are growing in popularity, and Hilton’s now adding a new twist which makes us think “Why didn't somebody do this sooner?”
The latest version of the Hilton Honors app lets you share your digital room key with other people – family members, friends, anybody who needs access to your room – by having it sent to the Hilton Honors app on their smartphone.
Not only does this remove the need to wait for people in the lobby or leave a spare key in an envelope at the front desk, Hilton’s digital approach adds a lot more security and flexibility to the key sharing scenario.
For starters, while you can share your digital key with up to four people, each gets a unique invitation (via email or SMS) which they can’t then forward to somebody else.
There's a limited amount of time in which they can accept your invitation before the link expires, and of course you can remove their access at any time.
Shared digital keys enjoy the same level of access as your key, including elevators, swimming pools and gyms, as well as the doors to the Club Lounge or Executive Lounge if that’s part of your reservation. They'll even be automatically updated if you extend your stay or change rooms.
The updated app also introduces confirmed room upgrades for Hilton Honors Gold and Diamond members up to 72 hours before arrival, with the ability to choose your new room from the hotel floorplan up to 36 hours ahead of your stay or while completing check-in formalities on the app.
Hilton says its shared room keys and confirmed upgrades are now active across thousands of hotels among of Hilton’s dizzying portfolio of 18 brands.