With many of FCM’s clients heading into the 2019 hotel rate sourcing period, a timely reminder to be prepared for 2019 has been issued from 4D Consulting – our independent business travel consulting division within the Flight Centre Travel Group.
4D’s Manager, Accommodation Sourcing Team, Dean Easton was part of the speakers’ line-up at the recent CAPA conference in Sydney. During his presentation Dean said that with hotel occupancy up by an average 2% across the Australian and New Zealand markets and rates on the rise in most capital cities – corporates were advised to start their 2019 hotel program sourcing sooner rather than later.
He said that after close analysis of hotel rates across the globe, 4D’s advice was to start the sourcing process as soon as possible, particularly if your company needed to negotiate rates in the buoyant markets of Sydney or Auckland.
“We’re telling customers to go to market early, and don’t leave it to the last minute,” Dean said. “Looking ahead clients with medium to high volume accommodation programs or companies that need accommodation in key cities, should be focusing on having their rates negotiated, loaded accurately and accessible so they’re ready for 2019.
“It’s all well and good to have a negotiated rate but if it’s not loaded accurately in the GDS, your missed savings could be significant.”
Dean said that starting the sourcing process early was not just about securing a good rate.
“It’s about giving yourself or your company time to analyse the market properly,” he said.
“Each property should be analysed on a number of levels including how many rooms they have for the rate you’re being offered; rate accessibility and ancillary services to name a few.
“This is why, it is often better to outsource this part of your program or at least be working with an experienced TMC like FCM, to ensure you’re basing your decisions on sound intel and that you have access to a broad database of rates to check how competitive your program is.”