MCLEAN, Va. and FRANKLIN, Tenn., Sept. 15, 2021 /CNW/ — Today, global hospitality leader Hilton and Mars Petcare, the world’s largest pet care company, announced they are teaming up to set a new standard for pet-friendly travel. Leveraging insights from Mars Petcare’s BETTER CITIES FOR PETS™ program, Hilton’s Extended Stay brands, Homewood Suites by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton will implement pet-focused programming and benefits in the U.S. and Canada to become a pet hero for guests. Additionally, by January 1, 2022, Homewood Suites will join Home2 Suites to become a 100% pet-friendly brand across its portfolio of hotels and both brands will introduce consistent pet fees, starting at $50 per stay.
As pet ownership continues to rise, people are spending more time with pets now than ever before. A recent online survey1 revealed that 85% of pet parents say they’re likely to travel in the next year, and 65% say they’ll bring their pets along. By combining their industry-leading expertise in hospitality and pets, Hilton and Mars Petcare have come together to anticipate and address the needs of pet parents to make traveling together more seamless and enjoyable.
Journey to Pet Heroes
On the journey to become pet hero brands for guests, Homewood Suites and Home2 Suites will work alongside the experts at Mars Petcare to develop and deliver pet-friendly programming to ensure a “paws-itive” experience for travelers and their pets throughout their stay. Additionally, both brands will be rolling out consistent pet fees by January 1, 2022. As of today, Home2 Suites offers more than 500 pet-friendly hotels for travelers to choose from, in addition to more than 300 pet-friendly Homewood Suites locations. By 2022, Hilton’s Extended Stay brands will become fully pet-friendly, offering pets and their pet parents more than 1,000 hotels and 110,000 rooms to choose from across North America, with more than 500 hotels and nearly 55,000 rooms in development.
“Pets are an integral part of many of our guests’ families, and we’re proud to collaborate with Mars Petcare on the journey to become pet hero brands,” said Bill Duncan, global head, All Suites & Focused Service brands, Hilton. “Our Extended Stay brands offer a home away from home for travelers, and their pets, especially with our spacious accommodations. We look forward to spreading the light and warmth of hospitality by creating a more inclusive and seamless travel experience for our guests and their furry friends.”
Additionally, starting today, Hilton guests who check-in with a pet at select Homewood Suites and Home2 Suites locations will have early access to a Mars Petcare digital service pilot program where they can receive timely expert tips to help pets adjust to the new environment. This first-of-its-kind program for Mars Petcare in the travel industry, will provide guests access to Mars Petcare experts for pet health and wellness and behavioral questions that may come up during their stay. To start, guests at select locations* in five certified cities by the BETTER CITIES FOR PETS program including Dallas/Plano, Texas; Jackson, Wyo.; Miami, Fla., Nashville, Tenn. and Phoenix, Ariz. will have access to this service.
“We’ve seen first-hand the undeniable bond that pet parents have formed with their pets particularly over the past year, and we are more committed than ever to our purpose: A Better World for Pets,” said Ikdeep Singh, Regional President, Mars Petcare North America. “Leaning into our BETTER CITIES FOR PETS program, we are honored to come together with Hilton to address a common pain point for pet parents as we continue on our mission to create a more welcoming world for people and their pets.”
Pet Parents Back on the Road
Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, approximately 23 million U.S. homes welcomed a new pet, which accounts for nearly 1 in 5 households2. After months of spending extra time at home with their furry friends, 58% of pet parents say they are seeking pet-friendly accommodations1. Homewood Suites by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton offer spacious and value-driven accommodations for the whole family, pets included. Both brands feature comfortable all-suite guest rooms with separate living and sleeping areas and fully-accessorized kitchens, offering travelers and their pets all of the space and comforts of home, whether for a quick trip or an extended stay.
With a rich history of more than 85 years in the pet care industry, Mars Petcare, whose portfolio consists of brands including PEDIGREE®, CESAR® and IAMS™ and veterinary providers including BANFIELD™, BLUEPEARL™, VCA and more, continues to create programs and partner with others to drive its purpose forward. The BETTER CITIES FOR PETS™ program is a research-based model for pet-friendly practices and policies. The program aims to help communities become more pet-friendly by bringing the voice of pets and their owners to places of influence and advocating for fewer pets in shelters, more pet-friendly places, and happier, healthier lives for both people and pets.