Need a room right now? Go mobile

By Rob Lovitt

Looking for a hotel at the last minute? If you’re one of the millions of Americans with a smartphone or tablet, look no farther than the device in your hand. Between new apps and a better understanding of the mobile market, finding an empty bed is getting easier all the time.
“Mobile is really opening up a brand-new channel for hotels to sell rooms for tonight and tomorrow,” said Pedro Colaco, president and CEO of GuestCentric Systems, a developer of reservation systems for independent hotels.

In fact, according to GuestCentric’s data, 60 percent of people who booked a room at the company’s client hotels via a mobile device were booking for the same day or the day after.
“We’re seeing a lot more last-minute travel,” said Lindsey Wise, operations manager at the Aiken Hotel in Aiken, S.C. “A lot of our guests don’t book ahead anymore because they don’t know if they’ll need a room for the night or not.”

And third-party booking sites have taken note. Last month, Priceline launched Tonight-Only Deals, a same-day booking app for the iPhone designed to compete with HotelTonight, which went live last year.
The tool, which was recently expanded to the iPad, is bundled into the company’s Hotel & Rental Car Negotiator app. It offers same-day booking capability at select hotels in 34 cities and promises discounts of up to 35 percent off other published rates.

Source: MSNBC’s travel kit

Get the full story on GuestCentric

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Posted on November 7, 2011, in Hospitality Digital Marketing Services, Mobile Strategies and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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