The Check-In: Keep your hotel thriving despite living cost worries this October
- Peak travel season is over for most of Europe, the nights are drawing in earlier, and cost of living concerns look set to impact future travel patterns. But this October, there’s plenty smart properties can do to stay ahead of the curve. In this first monthly update, our Head of Operations Nathalie Rey Valdivieso shares her insights and advice.
From resorts to city centre properties, it’s fair to say that 2022 has been the most “normal” year in a while in Europe. Sunshine destinations have enjoyed a strong summer, and the bookings are flowing in for city breaks between now and Christmas. But we’re still a long way from the predictable patterns of the late 2010s, and anyone looking to maximise a property’s revenue will need to stay flexible to seize every opportunity.
Sunshine destinations: how long is your season?
The peak summer holiday periods remain the most popular - and the highest-earning - for beach and resort destinations. But that doesn’t mean they’re the only dates you should be concentrating on. Changes in how people work - and the amount of cash in their wallet - are influencing their behaviour.
Digital nomads have become an important revenue stream for many properties. These long-stay guests will have particular demands, but hotels that can provide the right facilities and a sense of community - at the right price - are seeing benefits. My colleague Slavi Kalov is a digital nomad, and recently shared some advice for hoteliers exploring this revenue stream. Get it right, and you could see a lucrative flow of bookings from specialist room sellers like RemoteDream.
Reviewing your opening dates could make sense if you usually close for a low season. We’ve seen properties in some resorts extend their opening dates, and being rewarded with early-season bookings flowing in already from guests who are looking to spread the cost of their future trips - through room sellers who offer part payment with tools like Klarna. The one thing that’s clear is that adapting fast to market conditions will reward savvy revenue managers.
City destinations: cast a wide net
We’re broadly seeing business travel continue to recover, albeit not at the same pace as leisure traffic. But while many tourists are keeping their annual sunshine trip, early signs suggests that cash-conscious guests may scale back on shorter city breaks. That means city properties need to work harder to bring in leisure travellers - so here are two tips that can help snatch bookings from more of the latter group:
Consider currency fluctuations and the attractiveness of your destination in different source markets. Hotels in the UK will feel relatively more affordable to American and European travellers - and doing some Christmas shopping during their visit could be particularly appealing to guests who are paid in currencies that are performing well against the pound. Tailor your distribution strategy to match.
There are ways to boost the affordability of your property to potential guests, as cost of living and energy prices encourage belt-tightening across Europe. You could offer length of stay promotions, partnerships with local businesses (for example, offering discounted meals, activities or shopping), or in-property incentives (like room upgrades, free spa access or discounted F&B options). Make sure these are clearly advertised in any channel you’re selling through.
Wherever your property is, and whoever your target traveller, it’s more important than ever to think about where you’re selling your rooms, and reaching as many potential guests as possible. And at Impala, we can help you quickly and easily reach a host of room sellers and their guests - all with no upfront cost.
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