OTAs > Hotels and B&Bs

Booking portal HRS: Best price clause is unlawful
As the hotel booking portals appeared, they were a godsend for the industry – an opportunity just for sales weak smaller, often family-run hotels. One finally got the chance to be found. Some nice photos, some text, plus good prices – that was the recipe which also brought independent hotels suddenly on the road to victory. Only in the case of success a brokerage commissions to the portals were to be paid.

But the story of the portal is typical of the online world, it is a story of a curse and a blessing, the prices of established companies driven into the ground by the market dominance and power of Internet giants like OTAs. Unlike in most other industries, but the hotel booking portals rely on the hotels – and their rooms.
Meanwhile, 90 percent of all Hotels in Germany are listed at OTAs such as HRS, Hotel.de, Booking.com and Expediawith at least one of their rooms -. It has become easy to reserve  from our home computer  a hotel somewhere on the coast of Brazil in Fortaleza or in Bad Schwartau. And because it is so wonderfully simple, the agent rapidly gained customers – at the expense of a direct booking.

But the Hotel Grand Elysée in Hamburg Germany has claims to have paid annually about one million euros commission to the Web-giant (OTA) – and swerved: Owner Eugen Block advertised in major daily newspapers that in future he will give the best rate only if booked directly through the hotel . In Regensburg (another city in Germany) 38 hotels created the website http://www.hotels-in-regensburg.com . Inland the first ten days they saved by generated there reservations about 10,000 euros in commissions and donated the money.

The “Best price clause” is unlawful

Even if for a hotelier initially attractive, to be represented at a trendy website and get more unexpected guests booked through them, this advantage is now shrunk significantly – because the competitor is to be found there right with you. And online customers often decide to chose the cheapest of its category. For independent hotels this is ruinous in two ways: You must be very cheap and still pay a commission on these favorable rates – or their rooms are far too many nights empty.

But the more increased the market power of the portals became, the more one-sided the balance of power became, which culminated in the so-called “Best-price-clause” in the contracts with hoteliers. Accordingly, hotel owners may NOT offer their rooms cheaper on any other distribution channel  – not even if the potential guest came trudging with suitcase in hand in the lobby and inquired about a free room directly.

Late last year, the German Federal Cartel Office has declared in a court case with HRS (OTA) the “Best-price-clause”  as unlawful and since then takes a critical look at the contracts. This development gives hoteliers new leeway in pricing. For potential customers it means more work again to find the best price.

There are in any case of portal (OTA) to portal (OTA) some significant price differences. This is due to the different “packaging” a back door to avoid the all too easy price comparability. Sometimes the standard room is advertised without food, sometimes a deluxe room with breakfast or half board, with spa voucher or free parking in the underground garage. Even that proves that it is worth for customers to look closely before each booking.

Portals (OTAs) fight back

This is even more important after the Cartel Office decision. Of course are hoteliers keen to sell their rooms free of commission that works best in self-distribution – in the lobby, on the phone and on the hotels own website. Therefore it is to be expected  now that the best price will always be found at the hotel itself as in the example of the Grand Elysée Hotel.

For guests Hotel Portals (OTAs) would then shrink to comparison tools which would provide a good grip  on the local or regional market – and would bring bookings more regularly back to the hotel page. However, the portals (OTAs) are fighting back: they place their sales-candy elsewhere – by include additions. For example, the free cancellation is possible up to 18 clock on arrival a popular sales-candy.

And they improve the booking technology, facilitate sleek Apps to book and save the customer time and effort. On the field of technology, they are almost ahead of every hotelier. And on top they expand their business. Booking.com and HRS have already released apps for last minute hotel bookings and promise between 30 and 50 per cent discount for online reservation on the day of arrival.
Customers are happy. And again the hotel owner in spite of all the trouble they went through can not past the giants. Because an empty room brings hotel owners nothing. Only “plus” for the hotel he got slapped with a giant discount and painful commission he at least got a bit of money.

And the winner? The customer. Of course only if he looks closely.

Tried to translate from:

http://www.spiegel.de/reise/aktuell/hotelbuchungsportale-versus-hotels-kampf-um-den-bestpreis-a-968510.html

Trip Through L’Orignal a small village in Eastern Ontario

Today we thought we take a little photo tour through L’Orignal and show you around. “Downtown” L’Orignal : We thought we would take you on a photo tour through L’Orignal. We tried to get the most historic buildings from L’Orignal included.

LOrignal Marina Abadin B&B

LOrignal Marina Abadin B&B

L’Orignal is a little village with a population of 2033 people (census of 2001) but it appeals through its beautiful core showing off the historic buildings. The majority of the population lives in a modern new-build part of L’Orignal’s residential area.  L’Orignal is tightly woven into the infrastructure of Hawkesbury and only 5 minutes from the core of Hawkesbury.  The Marina is one of the most frequented attractions for tourists and locals alike and offers a great service to an affordable price.

 

The community of the village tries to preserve the historic heart and the inviting spirit welcomes visitors form around the world. It definitely helps if you are knowledgable of the French language since this area population of Prescott Russell is 85% francophone. Most of the people are bilingual and can switch to English if needed.
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Some  History :

“The Seigniory of L’Orignal (later renamed the Seigniory of Longueuil), was granted by the Company of New France to Françoise Prévost in 1674. Together with La Salle’s Cataraqui (Kingston), it was one of only two seigniories that was granted by the King of France as part of New France in what is now Ontario. As part of New France, the area was ceded to Great Britain in 1763. The seigneury was assigned to Upper Canada (Ontario) during the creation of Upper Canada and Lower Canada (Quebec) in 1791.

230,000 acres (930 km2) of seignory land was purchased by Nathan Treadwell of Plattsburgh, New York, in 1798. The property was confiscated by government during the War of 1812 and returned to his son in 1823. The Village of L’Orignal was chosen as the district town for the Ottawa District in 1816. The Ottawa District Courthouse was built in L’Orignal in 1825 and is still in use. L’Orignal Parish was established in 1846 as the first Catholic parish in Prescott County.”

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L’Orignal,_Ontario  – Quotation 

 

 

 

 

What is an QR code and why should we bother with it?

What is an QR code and why should we bother with it?

A QR code is like a barcode but two-dimensional. It can be scanned through a camera-equipped smartphone. You need to download an app before your phone can read this. It is called a QR code-scanning application (app).
QR is a great invention developed by a company named Denso Wave in Japan and car companies were the first ones to use them.
It is the missing link between hard copy advertisement and online content like a website. A business now can connect offline customers with their business presented on the internet. This is an engaging and interactive way of getting your potential guests attention. Big companies like Volkswagen and Ebay use it. So if they think it is worth we should use it too and it is FREE !!

Volkswagen-Up-running-around-Germany-with-QR-codesebay_bus_qr_code

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why would I care to bother with this ?

Well let me put it that way : Why not ?

It is such an amazing tool, which gives you so much more possibilities to present your target market with a wealth of information you could not place in an email, letter, sign let alone an newspaper ad or a business card. But you can place a small QR code on those prints and direct them through their smart phones to your internet space. There they can find your information you want your customers to provide with.

Scanning the QR code is simple and your potential customer downloads your information to their smart phones or is instantly directed to your website or even one specific page. Lets say a page where you promote a special deal you have send through snail mail.

 

QR code special offer for our business partners

QR code special offer for our business partners

The list of info you can provide your target market is almost endless:

  • Special Offers
  • Your Room description
  • Your social media pages like FB, Twitter or Google+
  • Let them read an article on your blog
  • Or you can even lead them to a audio message (haven’t tried that one yet but it is on my bucket list)

We used our QR code already quite extensively over the last years on Newspaper advertisement, Tourist booklets, Brochures and in Letter advertisement campaigns to name only a few.

Here is one more creative and innovative idea I found on the internet .

reading-qr-codes

Now tell me why would you not want to use QR codes?  Where can you get / make those QR codes?
There are website on the internet who transfer your information or website link into a printable QR code.
You just download and save the image to your computer and voila there it is for your use. I use the following QR code generator: https://www.the-qrcode-generator.com/
It works well and the best is that it is for free and easy to work with ! 

Abadin Bed & Breakfast

Abadin Bed & Breakfast

The only thing you should consider:

– Don’t make it smaller than about 1 X 1 inch or it might become unreadable for smartphone software.

– In my experience different colour work but black on white guarantees the best result. We printed them on our red, green and yellow envelopes and it worked just fine but you have to make sure you check before you send things off.

 

 

 

 

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Receive a FREE snack basket at arrival when using this time limited offer. Book your room with an FREE GIFT COUPON and you will also get an amazing 20% discount !! Enjoy the Abadin B&B amenities you’ve come to expect with each booking.

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What our guests have to say about us:

“Best of the Best”
Reviewed 1 April 2014Everything here was flawless — hospitality, breakfast, cleanliness, service, location, etc. This was my second time staying at Abadin and it really never disappoints. The rooms are as if it came straight out of a magazine or HGTV.     Read more….

Get more perks and discounts at Abadin B&B by Joining our Special Offer List

Please copy and paste following coupon code with your booking :  Find the Coupon Code in your letter !

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Limited Time Offer! Offer applies to King Suite or Kings Room only. Booking must be placed latest by the 30. June 2014 to use your code and receive your FREE Snack Basket and a 20% Discount with your room. Code for Free Gift and 20% Discount only valid on bookings redeemed before 29th of December 2014.
You can trust us : We offer better rates and more service that any of the hotels !!