Hellewell will be responsible for ensuring innovative technology continues to enhance the customer experience and drive the business forward.
He will report to Peter Gowers, Travelodge group chief executive, and be a member of the group operating board.
Gowers said: “We are delighted to welcome James as our new chief technology officer.
“He brings extensive experience in driving digital and multi-site technology improvements in fast paced customer environments.
“His background in retail will be invaluable as we continue our ongoing drive to strengthen our customer service and productivity.”
Hellewell was previously the chief information officer and transformation director of the fashion retailer Jack Wills.
At Jack Wills he led a multi-year transformation of digital and in-store technology platforms, improving customer functionality and delivering low-cost solutions while strengthening information security.
His prior experience includes senior technology and programme management roles with Selfridges, the Home Retail Group, Carphone Warehouse and BUPA Australia, following an early career with the management consulting business of Deloitte.
Hellewell said: “I am very excited to be joining such an iconic hotel brand.
“With more than a million visits a week to travelodge.co.uk, a booking almost every three seconds and more than 12 million check-ins a year, there is real potential to use innovative technology to drive further growth across the business.
“I can’t wait to get started with my new team.”