The percentage of business travelers who book hotels within their corporate travel programs has hovered around 50% - 60% for years.
Travel managers told the Global Business Travel Association (GBTA) that one reason is that their travelers want to stay at a different type of property than what’s available in their program. Another big reason? They can get better rates on their own.
Limited choice = Limited compliance
The heart of the matter is that business travelers don’t believe they have enough choice within their company’s program, whether due to location, property type or rates. For a long time, they were right.
While independent hotels are more prevalent in most areas of the world, chain hotels were the primary option in most global distribution systems (GDS), the main source of supply for travel management companies (TMC). Rates were limited to those negotiated or available publicly, unless a TMC managed to get exclusive rates.
So, travelers did what they had to. They booked directly through hotels or online travel agencies to find the rooms that met their needs.
Why we built RoomIt by CWT
We launched our hotel division start-up, RoomIt by CWT, to help travel managers address the issue of travelers booking outside of their company’s travel program. Travelers now have access to over 800,000 accommodation options, including chain hotels, independent properties, and optional apartments, in over 73,000 cities worldwide, giving them the choice they want.
The Key to Compliance: Offer options to your travelers
Driving Compliance through choice
A CWT European manufacturing client struggled to increase the rate at which their staff booked within their program because travelers could not book accommodation in the smaller European cities they frequented.
In the year after the client implemented full RoomIt content across all of its booking channels, including their Traveldoo booking tool, its hotel attachment rate grew 5% and the average daily rate dropped an average of two dollars, resulting in almost $300,000 in annual savings. That equals 2,368 free hotel room nights a year for them. Time to order room service champagne.
If you build a hotel program with the right mix of rooms and rates, you’re sure to bring travelers back to your program.
Blog author: Scott Brennan, Chief Growth Officer and Founder, RoomIt by CWT