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Photo: Pauline Mae
Photo: Pauline Mae

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Tale of Two Worlds: How to manage a hotel program in EMEA

Managing the local portion of a large corporate hotel program requires you to live in two worlds. You have to design a plan to accommodate the distinctive needs of your region while also taking your company’s larger travel strategy into consideration.

We partnered with CWT Solutions Group to develop tips to help you with the unique aspects of managing corporate travel in the EMEA region.

1) Add independent hotels to your corporate tools

Your company likely has chain-wide agreements with large brands but they may not meet local travel needs, especially in secondary cities.

75% of European travelers report the top reason they make bookings outside their company's travel program is a lack of accommodation options near their workplace. Use other content sources from your travel management company like specially sourced rates or third-party hotel content such as Booking.com or Expedia Partners Solutions to add more property types to your hotel program. This will increase the likelihood of travelers booking in your program.

2) Give Europeans their breakfast

European travelers are generally more influenced by breakfast than any other hotel attribute – more than property type, health club or gym, and even the hotel photos – so don’t skimp on breakfast in your hotel negotiations.

3) Start using rate re-shopping tools

85% of travel buyers in EMEA don’t use rate re-shopping tools, yet rate re-shopping tools can produce 1-2% total program savings. Since these tools rebook similar rates at the same property, they provide a seamless experience for both you and your travelers.

4) Allow non-refundable rates

62% of European travelers would book non-refundable rates if discounts are significant enough, according to GBTA/RoomIt study, "Improving Hotel Programs in 2019." Travelers aren’t always wrong to do so. Non-refundable rates can actually be beneficial to your program.

Read more tips on how to manage your hotel program in EMEA here.


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CWT is a Business-to-Business-for-Employees (B2B4E) travel management platform. Companies and governments rely on us to keep their people connected – anywhere, anytime, anyhow – and across six continents, we provide their employees with innovative technology and an efficient, safe and secure travel experience. Every single day, we look after enough travelers to fill more than 100,000 hotel rooms, while our meetings and events division handles more than 100 events every 24 hours.