When you travel out to any country, most of your traveling budget is consumed by your hotel stays. But having a stay in Japanese hotels was never this cheap until 27-year-old Tetsuya Inoue began running One-Dollar hotel, Asahi Ryokan. The hotel, Asahi Ryokan, gives its guests an option to pay just $1 or ¥100 for a one-night stay. The question is, why so cheap? Guests have this option if they agree to live stream their entire stay on the hotel’s YouTube channel “One Dollar Hotel”.
Hotels in Japan seem to be getting pricier due to travel boom and rising popularity. So, it is quite a surprise when you hear about this one-dollar hotel in the city of Fekuoka. This hotel was earlier owned by the grandmother of Tetsuya Inoue. But one day, Tetsuya Inoue came up with an idea – “what if he could use the power of the internet to bring in a new audience and a new revenue stream?”
Let’s clarify a few things. To get this one-dollar stay option, you don’t have to be a famous YouTuber, influencer, or an online personality. You just have to exchange your privacy for a cheap hotel stay. What kind of people would agree to exchange their privacy? There’s a catch in this too. For this, Tetsuya Inoue explains that live streaming feed is video-only, so guests staying in this room will have privacy in their phone calls or conversations. Guests are allowed to turn off the lights. The bathroom area is out of the camera’s coverage
“This is a very old hotel, but it is based on an entirely new business model”, says Tetsuya Inoue. Since Inoue began offering this deal last month, four guests have taken this offer. Inoue also adds, “Nowadays, young people don’t care much about their privacy. Some of them say it’s OK to be watched for just one day if the deal is for only $1”.
While $1 rooms are clearly a loss for the owner of any hotel, Inoue thinks beyond this. He says his YouTube channel has already crossed 1000 subscribers and when it gets more than 4000 views per hour, he will be able to monetize the channel and put ads on it.
There is another reason for this $1 room. Inoue says that Room No. 8 is the least-often booked room in his hotel. So, a $1 offer is quite an interesting idea to convince people to stay in this room. They make $1 each time a guest stays in that room which is better than leaving the room empty. If this $1 room sounds a great deal for you, contact the hotel directly and ask for the hyakusanjuen no heya or $1 room.