a hotel app allows <the> guest to check out remotely

VicNicSor

Banned
Russian
A hotel app allows the guest to check out remotely. The guest can simply open the app to begin the check out process or they can even be reminded through a push notification.
Using Hotel Mobile Apps for Guest Retention

This is the beginning of an article. A hotel app has been introduced to the reader, and from now, it's a specific guest who is using this app. And hence article "the" is used, am I correct?
Thanks.
 
  • Chez

    Senior Member
    English English
    No, it is a generalisation. 'the guest' is 'any guest'.

    They could have used the plural: allows guests to check out remotely; guests can simply open the app
     

    Winstanley808

    Banned
    English - U.S.
    If "A hotel . . . remotely" is the very first sentence of the entire article, or the first time guests have been mentioned, I would use "a guest" there but could use "the guest" beginning with the next sentence, although "a guest" would be just as appropriate. The discussion not about a particular guest but about any guest. Once a guest has been introduced, however, subsequent references could be to that guest, and thus use the definite rather than the indefinite article.
     

    VicNicSor

    Banned
    Russian
    Once a guest has been introduced, however, subsequent references could be to that guest, and thus use the definite rather than the indefinite article.
    So, even if "a guest" is introduced in the first sentence, and from now on in the article it's mentioned as "the guest", it's still "any guest", not just an imaginable specific guest, right?
     

    Winstanley808

    Banned
    English - U.S.
    Vik, one could write it either way. You could describe the whole process of using the app from the point of view of a single guest, from check-in at the hotel until checi-out and departure. You would begin with a guest but then continue to follow that hypothetical guest through his or her stay, and refer to that guest as the guest. You could also just keep thinking of an indefinite guest at each stage of use, and keep referring to a guest.
     

    VicNicSor

    Banned
    Russian
    Vik, one could write it either way. You could describe the whole process of using the app from the point of view of a single guest, from check-in at the hotel until checi-out and departure. You would begin with a guest but then continue to follow that hypothetical guest through his or her stay, and refer to that guest as the guest. You could also just keep thinking of an indefinite guest at each stage of use, and keep referring to a guest.
    One question:): if I tell a story about some specific person, I introduce him/her with "a", and then I use "the". Now, when I talk about a mobile app, I talk about a guest in general, but I still introduce him/her with "a", and then I use "the". Therefore, it doesn't matter whether I talk about a specific person, say, John, or about any guest -- the same rule (first mentioning with "a", and from then "the") is applicable to both cases, right?
     
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