Pegasus Solutions’ Utell, representing the world’s largest collection of independent hotels, introduced a dynamic Web portal for travel agents today at World Travel Market in London. The launch of www.UtellAgent.com features the unveiling of online commission payment tracking, giving travel agents an online service through which they can monitor earned commission payments from Utell member hotels. The commission tracking service is the latest demonstration of Utell hotels’ commitment to facilitating the timely payment of travel agent commissions.
“Our Utell member hoteliers have been instrumental in creating this portal and setting the stage for the success of this new tool for travel agents,” said Roland Tanner, vice president of product strategy and planning for Pegasus Solutions. “Through the standards we’ve set, we’re seeing a marked increase in the percentage of commission payments made by Utell member hotels. The hotels’ commitment to our standard of issuing commission payments no later than 30 days after guest departure, and the resulting confidence it brings to the agency community, is a key component of our strategy to compete with the large hotel chains.”
The portal also represents yet another milestone in the commission processing arena for Pegasus Solutions, which pioneered automated commission processing services with Pegasus Commission Processing (formerly known as HCC) in 1992. Pegasus Solutions, Inc. is a leading worldwide provider of hotel reservations-related services and technology.
The Utell hotel commission tracking service is easy for agency personnel to use, requiring only three simple steps to view status reports on individual commission payments:
- Agents log into www.UtellAgent.com using either their IATA or
- A link takes users to the commission enquiry screen, where
they can enter Utell reservation confirmation numbers to
request a status report.
- After clicking on “Start Enquiry,” the service generates a
status report for each reservation.
Reports from the portal show multiple codes that denote the status of each commission payment, with each code explained in detail on the frequently-asked-questions page. The service also identifies non-commissionable rates, bookings with pre-paid commissions, cancellations and no-shows. To facilitate resolution of commission payment issues, the portal provides links for agents to contact Pegasus’ hotel customer support and member hotels directly.
Utell hotels are now required to report specific details on each reservation - and the resulting commission payment—to the service. Hotels are required to deliver commission payment data regardless of whether they pay commissions directly or via a third-party vendor (such as Pegasus Commission Processing).
With hotels issuing payment no later than 30 days from guest departure, agencies should receive the payment within 60 days of guest departure (allowing for international mail delivery). Once the 60-day mark has passed, agents can utilize the Utell hotel tracking service to make inquiries about delinquent payments.
Today’s launch culminates nearly a year of programming and development, infrastructure enhancements, and training sessions performed by Pegasus Solutions employees and member hotels. As a leading provider of room reservations at independent hotels around the world, Pegasus Solutions ensured that www.UtellAgent.com has the necessary sophistication and scale to accommodate the needs of travel agents from every region. Member hotels contributed to the project by re-engineering data reporting processes and providing individual contacts for commission-related issues.
Utell’s major travel agency customers in the United Kingdom were introduced to www.UtellAgent.com in October, receiving brochures and other information on how to use the portal. A gradual rollout to other regions, including countries in Asia-Pacific, Europe, and the Americas, begins with today’s announcement.
“Travel agents account for the vast majority of bookings to our member hotels, so it makes sense to deliver tools and services that reassure them of our commitment to help facilitate the timely payment of commissions they have earned,” said Tanner. “We’re confident the launch of www.UtellAgent.com will enhance relations between travel agents and our Utell hotels. Better agency relationships are the key to driving booking increases, an end result which ultimately benefits both travel agencies and our member hotels.”