MYSA Founder Gary Hurst shared his thoughts with BTN Europe on how serviced accommodation can support travel managers when it comes to cutting cost.
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I’m confident that business travel can – and will – recover from the current crisis, but an inevitable part of this recovery will also be financial cutbacks.
The good news is that there could be some surprisingly low-hanging fruit, one of which is the greater adoption of serviced accommodation. With just a few simple tweaks to the ways in which managers source, book and utilise serviced accommodation, there’s potential to achieve some significant savings.
First, there are substantial savings to be made by dealing with properties directly. Not only does doing so remove the costs of an intermediary, but it also provides greater control and oversight of the properties in your programme.
When negotiating rates too, ensure you’re taking advantage of a digressive pricing model. Serviced accommodation operators will invariably offer a cheaper nightly rate the longer you stay, with rate reductions tending to kick in from seven nights.
Don’t shy away from negotiating further savings on bulk bookings either. Negotiating lower rates through expected volume – rather than piecemeal stays – is another benefit of sourcing and managing properties directly.
Plus, there are plenty of potential savings once a traveller walks through the front door of a property.
In serviced accommodation, travellers have the option to shop and cook in well-equipped self-catering facilities rather than dining out, and at a far lower cost.
In the same vein, serviced accommodation has the potential to remove all sorts of unexpected extras appearing on a traveller’s invoice. After all, even where the upfront cost of a hotel stay can seem like a great deal, there are plenty of hidden extras travel companies may find themselves footing the bill for.
Serviced accommodation as a tool within business travel is growing fast. And though it might sometimes seem a little overwhelming, with the right strategy in place, it can also be a fantastic and underutilised tool for getting by on your budget in the challenging weeks and months ahead.