According to hotel.info, the leading online hotel reservations service for over 210,000 hotels around the world, the economic crisis and associated corporate pressure to reduce costs has created a clear trend for increased use of low cost online hotel reservation tools.Especially large corporations that make high numbers of bookings are currently using the present economic situation as a reason to move from planning to use online hotel reservation tools towards actually implementing such projects in-house or at least promoting the use of existing online applications to save costs.
Warini Munshi, Managing Director at hotel.info hotel booking Ltd., confirmed this trend, saying, “Certainly the need to make savings has resulted in a clear strategy amongst companies to implement or use self-booking tools. Whereas previously it was up to individual employees whether or not to use such services now edicts are being issued from above. We can also see this new growth reflected in our new contracts business. We have already achieved 120% of the business that we had in the same period last year.”
Mr Dirk Gerdom, who is responsible for global travel management at SAP AG, hopes that continued use of the reservation tool provided by hotel.info will help him achieve significant cost savings in hotel bookings for his company, “it is true that more consistent use of the hotel.info corporate client application is intended to achieve further cost savings. We will require our employees to make more use of the hotel.info service in the future. For us there are two convincing arguments - the cheapest online room prices, and the time saving in actually making the booking.”
Medium-sized companies are also noticing the benefits. Whilst there is a general move to undertake only the most important journeys, business trips naturally represent an opportunity to generate more business for the future. In times of difficult economic conditions this is obviously of particular importance shown by responses received in a survey of many medium-sized companies conducted by hotel.info. These companies now intend to make more concerted use of online hotel reservations to save on their travel expenses and avoid the high commissions payable to travel agents. This trend is seen by Warini Munshi as a direct counter-development to the measurable, general decrease in travel caused by the crisis, “even if the pool of travellers has become somewhat smaller, the transfer of bookings to online hotel reservation services represents a great sales opportunity for hotel.info.”
Online services such as hotel.info can offer high potential savings on hotel reservations to corporate clients in particular. These relate to process costs - after all selecting and reserving a room in a suitable hotel is much quicker through the internet. At the same time, however, the direct costs - what the company actually spends on its employees’ overnight stays - can also be reduced significantly. This is assured not only by the online room prices, which are always cheaper, but also by special corporate client rates that can be reserved through the hotel.info corporate client application which offers an average 10% discount on the publicly bookable rate at more than 20% of the listed hotels.