The hotel savings that corporate travel programs rely on are being undermined. That’s because hoteliers are failing to make agreed-upon rates available in their reservation systems—even with guaranteed last-room availability.
It’s worth fighting for those savings, say the experts behind BCD Travel’s 2020 Industry Forecast. Here’s why:
- When a negotiated rate isn’t available, travelers pay the public rate, even at a preferred hotel.
- Hotels don’t recognize a public-rate stay as a booking linked to your corporate account, so the data they collect won’t accurately reflect what your company is spending.
- Unaccounted bookings erode the volume you promised hotels. That drives up costs now and reduces your negotiating leverage with suppliers in the future.
The good news is corporate travel buyers, aided by their travel management companies, are getting better at pushing back. They’re using increasingly sophisticated data collection and analytics to audit rate availability, and they’re alerting hotels when they spot a problem.
Reliable TMC data is vital. TMCs should be able to collect data on all stays with a hotel, regardless of rate type. Companies can use this data to show when contracted rates weren’t available to their travelers.
Industry Forecast researchers recommend travel buyers ask their TMCs what kind of hotel booking data they’re collecting and compiling; how they’re making sure this data is clean, secure and reliable; and ways the TMC can help them fight for the rates promised by hotels.