Hotels and resorts can offer very different guest experiences, so they often use different kinds of hotel supplies for their operations.

Based on our experience providing hotel supplies for both types of properties, we wanted to highlight the most common differences in hotel products ordered by hotels vs. resorts.

There are some products that are ordered more commonly by large resorts, but these products might be suitable for smaller, independent hotels when used in the right way.

We hope these insights will help you brainstorm new types of products that you can bring into your property!

Oceanpoint Ranch - RFID Hotel Key Cards - Matte

1. Key Cards & Wristbands

Hotels have fewer rooms while resorts usually have a larger number of rooms, and this definitely influences the type of room keys the properties use.


Most hotels use magnetic or RFID key cards. Older hotels are more likely to use magnetic key cards, although many properties have begun to upgrade to RFID.

Hotels might benefit from using RFID wristbands for certain situations. They’re a great option for kids and can be useful when hosting special events at your property.


Nowadays, resorts mostly use RFID key cards because they’re less problematic and easy to program—you can program hundreds of room keys or access cards in just a few minutes.

Some all-inclusive resorts use RFID wristbands, the same type of wristbands that are now used at big music festivals. Wristbands are efficient because they can grant room access while also making it easy for staff members to identify who’s trespassing on the property. Resorts can also offer access to certain facilities based on programming the wristband.


2. Key Card Holders

Both hotels and resorts continue to use key card holders, which is one of the best ways to create a more elegant check-in experience for your guests.


Smaller hotels typically use paper key sleeves because they’re the most cost-effective and can be made to look nice with the right design.

Some large hotel chains, such as Hilton and Marriott, use higher-end key sleeves/holders that are a bit sleeker and heavier than the sleeves used at motels.

Boutique and luxury hotels more frequently use key folders because they’re more elegant and provide a greater variety of customization options, as well as room to provide amenity information. Some high-end properties may even use multi-panel key folders.


Most large resorts use key sleeves—with so many rooms, it’s the most cost-effective option.

Resorts often customize their key sleeves with a QR code that guests can scan to find useful property information, such as a resort map, amenity hours, restaurant menus, and more.

surfs up insert dnd

3. Do Not Disturb Signs

Do Not Disturb signs are crucial for delivering a great guest experience, which makes them one of the most important supplies for both hotels and resorts.


Most hotels use paper or plastic DND signs because they’re the most cost-effective option—at least, in theory. These signs do have a tendency to get bent and damaged fairly easily. While they can be quickly and affordably replaced, these costs can add up significantly over time.

Boutique and luxury hotels often prefer “luxury DND signs” that are made from wood, leather, or other sturdy and beautiful materials.


For the most part, resorts also use mainly paper or plastic DND signs because they’re cost-effective. However, medium-sized resorts may also prefer luxury DND signs because they don’t have to be replaced as often.

High-end resorts—especially in tropical vacation destinations—often use wooden DND signs because it matches the rustic quality of the accommodations.

Custom Supplies for Hotels and Resorts

Contact Front Desk Supply if you need to brand products for your hotel or resort. We can customize key cards, key holders, signage, stationery, food and beverage products, and so much more, plus we offer a free graphics service to help you create hotel supplies that dazzle your guests.