If you have just opened a new hotel, or you have been working in a hotel for a number of years, you know that things can go wrong with a booking system and you probably wonder what you can do to make it better.
In the old days, people used to have to make bookings by hand and they only spoke to their customers over the phone. This might sound a lot harder, but they knew what was going on with their bookings because they were the only ones who controlled the booking system.
There were no third parties involved. If you wanted to book a hotel, then you phoned up the hotel and made a reservation. As times progressed, people could book on the hotel’s website, but that was still run by the hotel.
Then times changed even further because third-party websites started taking reservations for hotels and flights. Some even booked package holidays, but most of them booked the flight and the hotel separately.
That was when trouble occurred because the hotel wasn’t really restaurant reservation system told about bookings until a certain time and then they might have already booked the room. When both sets of customers turned up, they had nowhere to put them and they had to find an alternative hotel for one customer, at their own cost.
However, with a central reservation system, all of that changed. If you own a hotel and you are wondering what type of reservation system that you should use, then read on for some tips on how a central reservation system can help your hotel.
- Convenience – A central reservation system is convenient for you and your customers. For the customers, they can book online anytime they want. They don’t have to wait until someone answers the phone on reception, or until a travel agent phoned them back. They can book their room online in a matter of minutes and then print their booking confirmation off from their email. For you, you won’t have to look around the hotel computer for empty rooms and you won’t have to worry about answering the phone to take reservations. Even if you do take a reservation over the phone then the booking system will automatically show you, which rooms are free and on what days they are available from.
- More Customers – Having access to a central reservation system gives you access to more customers because you can have the hotel listed on more websites. You could list the hotel on wholesale websites and when a room is booked through the website, the room will be taken off your computer to say that it is taken. Therefore, you won’t have any problems with double booking. Everyone knows how many rooms are left. The website will send you and the customer, a confirmation email so that you know exactly what is happening and you aren’t surprised when customers start turning up.
- Organization – Within the hotel, a centralised booking system will mean that you are more organised. On the reservation system, you will be able to see all the reservations, including bookings for the hotel restaurant, and you will be able to see a booking history. This helps because you can check your revenue and you can see when people are more likely to book, so that you can focus a marketing scheme on the dates when the hotel is less busy.