Citing a need for modern budget hotels in Hong Kong, KENNETH KWOK, Managing Director of HOMY INN made his dream a reality that he proudly shares today with Hong Kong’s more thrifty guests.

“As we were traveling overseas, we found that in Taiwan, Japan, Korea, and all over Europe, there exists hostels to suit the needs of various kinds of tourists. However, in Hong Kong, there was clearly a lack of modern budget hostels catering to the more, thrifty in-bound tourist market,” says Kwok. 

Hong Kong is one of the most popular travel destinations in the world. Over 60 million people visited Hong Kong in 2014, and hotel occupancy was at 90%. However, Hong Kong lacks modern budget hostels. According to statistics from the HK Tourism Board, hotels offered HK$1,473 per night in 2014, on average. Backpackers and budget travellers had few choices, and could only afford older, old-fashioned accommodations.

Filling a Niche

“We decided to start this business and do our best to make the people with limited budget be able to travel in style and as comfortably as possible,” says Kwok.

Today, with three locations in Hong Kong, mainly in the bustling Tsim Sha Tsui, Central and North Point district, Homy Inn effectively controls operating costs and is able to serve the low-end mass traveller bracket at $400-600 a night — a rate almost less than a third of 2014’s average. Rooms are of reasonable size, with simple and stylish decor, equipped with all essential amenities and are always clean. There are various types of rooms offered in Homy Inn, from single, double, twin, to family occupancy. Separate male and female dormitories are also available. Again, with limited new style hostels in Hong Kong, Homy Inn’s aim is, quoting the company slogan, “to do all we can with heartiness to make our guests’ stay filled with hilarity, harmony and of course, happiness.”

Fresh Challenges

Kwok notes that changes in tourists’ scale, increase in competition, and price wars remain challenges to Homy Inn. “In order to overcome them, more marketing and promotion, overall image upgrades, and perpetual service enhancement are always needed,” he says.

“Homy Inn offers hotel-style customer service at a much lower price. Our brand has branches at different locations in tourist district, located amidst many shops, but also conveniently near the MTR station and the airport shuttle bus stop. We offer the most flexible market pricing, and focus on customer experience. In the past years, Homy Inn has achieved a certain reputation in the industry, which has helped us gain many long-term customers as well as the competitiveness over other new business. The loyalty programmes are still under progress.”

Future Path

“We plan to increase occupancy by an additional 200 to 350 rooms within two years as well as to achieve further network coverage. Apart from that, included in the company’s agenda is our plan to expand brand recognition in different countries through overseas promotion, and cooperate with travel companies to conceive different package offerings. Beyond these, consistent hard work, innovation, team cohesion, a pleasant aura and positive attitude will see the company through,” Kwok says proudly.

“We do recognise the influence of social media and are working closely with them. For example, we have been granted with some awards that include “Gold Circle Award” by Agoda, “Outstanding Brand of The Best Chain Inn 2015” by PCCW, “Winner Award” by, “Top Rated Hostel” by and “2014 Winner of Certificate of Excellence” by tripadvisor. We plan to boost our investment in marketing and promotion over social media to attract more potential guests of the new generation.

“Though the path ahead will be steep and we will need to work harder to achieve our goals, we believe that our determination and commitment to our craft will take us to where we want to be,” concludes Kwok.

For additional information:

Exclusive video interview at the “Mediazone’s Most Valuable Services Awards in Hong Kong 2016”