During the first eight months of the year, 4.2 million room nights in Accor hotels were booked online, the equivalent of 170 hotels a day.
At August 31, online bookings in Accor hotels were up 60%, with a 65% increase for Accor sites in Europe. Room nights reserved on the Accor hotel websites (the accorhotels.com portal, as well as the sofitel.com, novotel.com, mercure.com, suite-hotel.com, ibishotel.com, etaphotel.com, hotelformule1.com, motel6.com and redroof.com sites) accounted for nearly 85% of total online bookings, compared with 15% for online distributors.
The percentage of Accor revenues from Internet bookings has steadily increased. For full-year 2003, Accor forecasts Internet business volume of nearly EUR 300 million, or around 5.6% of lodging revenue, compared with EUR 202 million and 3.6% in 2002. The Economy segment accounts for 63% of online bookings, which generate 6% of aggregate Ibis, Etap Hotel and Formule 1 revenues in Europe and 10% of Red Roof Inns and Motel 6 revenues in the United States.
Most visitors to the different websites are retail customers who generally choose an Accor hotel for leisure travel. In Europe, 42% of visitors to Group sites enter through the accorhotels.com portal, which attests to its growing reputation, while 58% go directly to the site of their preferred brand.
In early summer, the pace of online bookings further accelerated with one room reserved nearly every four seconds via Accor websites.
A major radio and Internet advertising campaign, launched in late June in France and Germany to promote the Accor hotels Smiley Prices, helped to increase the number of visitors to accorhotels.com.