As the holiday season has officially kicked off, people are cheering the news that countries around the globe are reopening and welcoming business travel and tourism back to their shores. Now that travel has started to resume, it’s not just individuals and families traveling. When it comes to group travel, everyone from kids’ sports teams to business conferences is booking up hotel rooms and meeting space, especially during high-demand periods. If you have a group coming up, especially in 2022, it’s important to start doing your research now to find the best availability and prices.
Whether you’re a professional meeting planner or if this is your first time booking a group, there are some “pro tips” you should know. Group rates tend to be lower than regular published rates, especially for larger groups. However, they are not always the lowest rates available. Hotel rates are very fluid and are based on the demand and occupancy patterns, so don’t assume that the rate you see on an online site today is the same rate that you will be quoted on different dates. Additionally, those rates only apply to one or two rooms, not a whole block of rooms. However, you can ask that the hotel guarantee you “the lowest group rate over your dates.” That means that if another group is in-house over your same dates and they get a lower rate, the hotel must match it.
There are some online websites that are especially good for group bookings. Check out Vindow’s SaaS, an online travel technology platform specifically for group hotel bookings. You can see all the hotels in any city or destination and then create and send a Request for Proposal with the application that goes directly to the hotel’s Sales department. They will quote rates based on your group’s dates and needs so that you will get multiple, competitive bids from only the hotels you want. That way, you can easily compare and know that you’re getting the best deal.