Over the last couple of years, business travel has been completely turned on its head and, as the industry continues its recovery, travel management companies need to be prepared for when corporate travel demand returns.
As the leading hotel technology platform in the corporate sector, HotelHub works with the world’s top TMCs to help them deliver the best possible service to their corporate customers.
Our experts have put together their key considerations for travel agents when making a corporate hotel booking.
1. Location, location, location
Regardless of the type of business trip, staying in a hotel that is conveniently located is always high on a business traveller’s priority list.
Some of the benefits, such as reducing time and money spent on local travel, are obvious. But with many travellers choosing to spend an extra few days exploring a destination after their business has concluded, considerations like access to public transport and local attractions are increasingly important.
HotelHub’s agent booking tool can display hotels within a five kilometre radius of a specified office or meeting location and users can easily switch between the list and map views. The interactive map view allows you to quickly identify hotel properties close to a specific location and gives you a good idea of what’s on your traveller’s doorstep, such as local restaurants, attractions and transport options, including bike stations.
2. Get the best rate for your customers
We all know that hotel room rates can fluctuate for any number of reasons. So, with prices changing constantly, how can you provide your clients with the best value for money without having to manually check and recheck for the best deals?
Whether you book or save a hotel for later, HotelHub’s Rate Optimiser tool automatically re-shops for a better rate up until the cancellation deadline and notifies you when it finds one. Once you accept the new rate, it can cancel, rebook and update your traveller’s PNR, saving you time and hassle.
And not only can Rate Optimiser find lower rates, it can be configured to look for upgrade opportunities, downgraded rooms for travel policy compliance and commissionable rates.
3. A personalised booking experience
Great customer service requires a personal touch and attention to detail. And nothing says personal service like proactively recommending your client’s favourite hotel!
However, finding that hotel isn’t always straight-forward. Checking your traveller’s booking history to find the right property can take up time you simply don’t have.
HotelHub’s HotelConnect app automatically identifies hotel stay opportunities in the GDS, then displays a personalised selection of properties based on the traveller’s booking history, previous colleague stays and preferred suppliers – allowing you to go that extra mile without the extra minutes.
4. Reviews over ratings
Star ratings can be a good indication of a hotel’s standards. But a word of caution – these can vary significantly depending on the country your traveller is heading to. A hotel rated locally as a four-star may not meet the same standards as a four-star hotel in your traveller’s home country.
Guest reviews often provide a more accurate picture of the experience your traveller can expect. Plus, you can find valuable insights, tips and recommendations, especially if you haven’t stayed there before.
Every hotel listed in HotelHub is paired with its aggregated review score, with more in-depth reviews available for further insight and information. So you can rest assured that you’re booking the best hotel for your clients.
5. Duty of care
Considering the ongoing global situation, traveller safety is more important than ever, especially if they are travelling to high-risk areas. Knowing where a traveller is at each stage of their journey is not just essential for corporate clients, but for you and your TMC, who bear the responsibility for providing any in-trip support.
When different travel segments are booked on different platforms – e.g. the flights are booked via the GDS but the hotel is booked on an aggregator site – it’s nearly impossible to keep a track of a traveller’s location, status and wellbeing.
HotelHub is able to integrate with any GDS and automatically adds the hotel segment to your traveller’s PNR, for full travel transparency. Having all travel details in one place gives better visibility of a traveller’s whereabouts and makes it much easier for you to meet your duty of care.
6. Maximise value and commissions
TMCs and corporates will usually have negotiated rates for hotels which, when booked, can provide better inclusions and amenities, as well as enhanced revenue opportunities and improved supplier leverage.
But with so many rates available from numerous content providers, making sure you’re picking the right rate can be a challenge.
HotelHub’s agent booking tool displays a preference badge on listings, so you can easily see whether a rate is agency or client preferred, helping you cut through the clutter. Dynamic hotel listings can also prioritise preferred hotels to show at the top of your search results, eliminating time wasted on excessive scrolling.