Hotelbeds: Three strikes and you’re out

Bedbank behemoth Hotelbeds has rolled out an update on its successful implementation of new distribution management rules, which directly address the rate integrity challenge for its 180,000 hotel partners globally.

As part of its policy to collaborate only with travel distribution companies that clearly add incremental value to hotel partners, Hotelbeds has invested heavily in new and market-leading automated technologies unavailable elsewhere in the market.

Using data analytics, tracking travel sellers’ flows and monitoring on a regular basis, Hotelbeds is able to accurately segment and monitor how contracted products are distributed.

To efficiently manage these processes Hotelbeds has established a team of professionals dedicated to ensuring that rates intended for offline channels are not sold by OTAs.

“We are totally committed to adding real value to our hotel partners”

Furthermore, Hotelbeds has also implemented a ‘three strike policy’ that disconnects offenders that have been found to distribute opaque rates in the OTA channel.

Following extensive internal training across Hotelbeds on how to effectively implement the new distribution rules, during the last three months the company has restricted access to rates for over 800 sales channels belonging to clients.

These changes have meant that during the last year Hotelbeds has stopped around €300 million of otherwise profitable sales to ensure compliance with the new policy as part of its commitment to hotel partners.

Carlos Muñoz, managing director at Hotelbeds, said: “We fully recognise the importance of the rate integrity challenge that the industry is facing and have been consulting with our hotel partners in private to quietly introduce change.

Whilst it is still early days and we recognise that more remains to be done, I am nonetheless pleased to confirm the significant impact we have made already and the positive feedback from hotel partners about the automated technologies we are using that are unavailable from any other bedbank”.

Carlos Muñoz

“Understandably some have asked ‘why are you doing this and how are you able to forgo €300 million in otherwise profitable sales?’ The answer is simple: we are totally committed to adding real value to our hotel partners and we know the best way to achieve this is by providing incremental, high-value bookings from long-haul source markets that don’t compete with their direct channel.

We achieve this by leveraging our B2B network of over 60,000 travel agents, tour operators, airline and points redemption schemes – all of whom offer a high proportion of incremental long-haul, long-stay guests that hotels find really valuable.

Soon we´ll be announcing further initiatives and providing more updates on how we feel that we can encourage the whole sector to take this topic more seriously: watch this space.”

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