In the current climate, there are many factors beyond our control affecting the business travel hotel sector whether it be a result of Brexit, terrorism, Trump or otherwise. But how do you ensure you are getting the best value for your corporate hotel bookings?
Here are our 5 tips to get the best deal for your corporate travellers.
#1 Set Limits
If you haven't already, you should always try to set limits within your travel policy to prevent overspend and leakage. It’s a great idea to first create a travel policy which sets out clear guidelines around what can be booked by your business travellers. If you haven't installed a travel policy within your business as of yet we have a simple but handy guide to creating an effective policy here. If using a travel management company (TMC) then they should be guiding you, helping set the parameters of spend either when booking online with an Online Booking Tool (OBT) or offline via dedicated travel team.
Try to drive your travellers to preferred hotels/chains/brands and try and consolidate your hotel spend where possible, especially where you have high room night volumes in a particular city. This makes it much easier to gain discounted corporate room rates from hotels and which volumes allow we can negotiate directly with the chains sales team to secure a brand-wide discount in some cases. Your Account Manager will have long-term relationships with the brands themselves, and will also be able to provide support with leading RFP’s and hotel negotiations on your behalf.
#3 Know the different causes of change
Dynamic pricing within the hotel sector will also have an effect on rates per night, when demand is low the price per night will follow, similarly if the demand were to rise in a particular area the price would rise alongside. For example, the recent decline in occupancy and rates per night in Aberdeen, is a direct result of a decrease in business in the oil and gas sector. Cross-pressures such as living wage increases will have an effect on pricing also.
If you are experiencing leakage within your corporate travel policy, conduct research as to why your travellers are booking out of policy terms determines by the company. Engaging with travellers and travel bookers at all levels will help you take full control of your business travel spend.
Following the above advice and working consultatively with your travel management company will help you make steps to ensure that your corporate hotel programme is in great shape and driving the maximum value possible.