business

NEC, JTB tie up to put teleworkers into hotels vacant during pandemic

5 Comments

NEC Corp and travel agency JTB Corp said Tuesday they are launching a new service allowing teleworkers to book empty hotel rooms for use as remote offices, repurposing the spaces left vacant due to the coronavirus' impact on hotel occupancy rates.

The service offered by NEC Solution Innovators Ltd and JTB will be launched on Aug 31 in Tokyo and surrounding areas, with a plan to expand it to Nagoya and Osaka by around March next year and nationwide by March 2022.

The two firms hope to have 30 hotels participating in the initiative by the end of March next year and 50 by late March 2022 as Japanese companies increasingly encourage staff to work remotely to reduce the risk of them contracting the virus while commuting on public transport and possibly creating cluster infections at workplaces.

The NEC unit will create and operate an application that will allow people and employers to search and reserve hotel rooms. It will also provide a function that hotel operators can use to register room availability and confirm reservation status.

JTB will pitch the initiative to hotels as a new source of revenue at a time when they have seen their occupancy rates fall due to the lack of travelers. The agency will also promote the service to firms that are looking to secure teleworking space for employees.

Under the system, an employee can reserve a space at a hotel via their computer or smartphone, with rates starting at 200 yen per 15 minutes for co-working spaces such as meeting and party rooms and from 3,000 yen for guest rooms with a minimum three-hour occupancy.

Hotels scheduled to offer the service include Hyatt Regency Tokyo in the Shinjuku area, Oakwood Premier Tokyo in the Marunouchi district and Ueno Terminal Hotel.

Amid the pandemic, the government is asking Japanese firms to ensure at least 70 percent of employees work outside of their office. Remote working has also been encouraged as companies adopt flexible working styles, such as staggered commuting.

© KYODO

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

5 Comments
Login to comment

The service offered by NEC Solution Innovators Ltd and JTB will be launched on Aug 31 in Tokyo and surrounding areas, with a plan to expand it to Nagoya and Osaka by around March next year and nationwide by March 2022.

With plans to start introducing this plan nationwide, which is based on the severe lack of tourists, not until March 2022, it seems JTB and these hotels have a pretty bleak outlook for tourism....

2 ( +2 / -0 )

with rates starting at 200 yen per 15 minutes for co-working spaces such as meeting and party rooms and from 3,000 yen for guest rooms with a minimum three-hour occupancy.

Wait a sec...

So its OK to share a working space with other workers in a hotel, but not at someone's actual office? Whats the point of teleworking then?

And for a love-hotel priced private room, this means the will clean/sanitize the room after each use?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Why bother? Let them work from home and avoid unnecessary travel.

But it may be more to do w. helping the hotel industry.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Why bother? Let them work from home and avoid unnecessary travel.

Perhaps because a small apartment in not conducive for a good work environment for workers with families? If you live a large house in the suburbs - great, if you live in a 2LDK apartment you have issues of space, disruptions, noise etc.

I assume these are hotels are close to their homes.

Karaoke booths have been operating as pseudo office spaces for teleworking. This is another step up.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I can easily foresee this coming in before a further announcement that the taxpayer/money printer is footing the bill.

If hotels need and deserve government assistance, they should be given it in a transparent way. Let's skip pretending it's clever or useful for them to do something else to justify getting the same assistance. Is 30 hotels' empty rooms' worth (say 1000 rooms) of teleworking going to make a difference in the fight against Covid-19? What percentage of Tokyo office workers will be able to do social distancing through this? 0.1%??

If people do not have enough space to work at home and the government is going to pay to help, there are all kinds of things that could be done without paying hotels. Paying them to rent a bigger apartment or extend their home, for example.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites