by Michael J. Shapiro | September 19, 2016
Marriott International has rolled out its new Wi-Fi Simplified program, an effort to bring more structure and transparency to to process of purchasing Internet service for meetings and conventions. As part of the program, which is now available in about 560 hotels in the United States, Canada, the Caribbean and Latin America, Marriott says planners can expect an easy-to-understand pricing structure and hotel associates who have been trained to ask the most relevant questions about bandwidth requirements. 
"We've rolled out our Wi-Fi Simplified program following months of testing, since customers told us it helped them better understand their Wi-Fi needs and match it to their budget," said Andrew Moffett, senior director, global discipline leader at Marriott. "Early feedback suggests this program will help eliminate headaches for both planners and their clients while ensuring that attendees receive the right amount of Wi-Fi," he says. "Our thinking is, even if your meeting is complex, the process needn't be."

New reporting tools, combined with the proper training of associates at the hotel level, will help ensure that planners wind up purchasing the bandwidth required by their meeting and attendees, added Moffett. 

At the same time, Marriott is beefing up bandwidth in some of its biggest meetings properties, investing as much as $500,000 in some hotels to do so. The cost of meetings Wi-Fi includes support throughout the meeting.