Chapter 6 The Impact of Third Party Internet Sites on the Hotel Guest Journey
Published: January 2018
Component type: chapter
Published in: Sustainable Value Creation in Hospitality
Parent DOI: 10.23912/9781911396376-3447
Reservations are essential for hotels to plan their operations. When considering reservations for their planning, hotel departments usually refer to the reservation horizon, that is the number of rooms booked on a day in the future, and the predicted pick-ups, that is the number of room reservations a hotel expects to get confirmed over a certain period. These figures are used to decide upon, for example, the number of employees needed in the F&B department for the breakfast shift or in Housekeeping to clean the rooms; the volume of ingredients needed for breakfast; and planning hotel rooms’ maintenance during less busy periods.
Nowadays hotel reservations are highly dependent on information technology. Most of the reservations enter the hotel’s Property Management System (PMS) via interfaces linked to different booking websites. These are owned and controlled by Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) and are generally referred to as Third-Party Internet sites (TPIs), because OTAs are independent organisations and not directly related to a hotel or a hotel chains, but exist to provide hotels with reservations. These concepts have already been discussed in Chapter 5, to which you are referred if you wish to know more about how TPIs work. In line with this, a TPI is defined as “an Internet Distribution System (IDS) operated by a variety of travel intermediaries not directly controlled by a hotel” (Hayes and Miller, 2011: 289). Chapter 5 also addressed the question of what happens with the information that guests provide while making a booking via an IDS, and have shown that large quantities of data and information are gathered by TPIs. Following up on this discussion, this chapter focuses on the sustainability challenges that arise from the increased influence of TPIs on the process through which travellers gather, select and judge information about their next trip. It is important to know that this chapter, if not otherwise stated, is written from the guest perspective. We generally agree with the statement that the use and abuse of a tool is in the hand of the user, although the developer or owner of the tool can nudge its users towards a more sustainable practice, and a more sustainable selection, and that is exactly where the sustainable challenges are.
In closing this brief introduction we wish to share a word of caution. Considering that developments in innovation technology are quick and continuous, and that regulations impacting the use of technology are inevitability changing, the authors would like to acknowledge that from a future perspective the issues discussed in this chapter might seem obsolete, and that in a few years and even in a few months more urgent issues might occur.
- Niels van Felius, NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences (Author)
- Elena Cavagnaro, NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences (Author) https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5347-2509
- Marit de Vries, NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences (Author)
For the source title:
- Elena Cavagnaro, NHL Stenden University of Applied Sciences (Editor) https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5347-2509
Felius, Cavagnaro & Vries, 2018
Felius, N.v., Cavagnaro, E. & Vries, M.d. (2018) "Chapter 6 The Impact of Third Party Internet Sites on the Hotel Guest Journey" In: Cavagnaro, E. (ed) . Oxford: Goodfellow Publishers http://dx.doi.org/10.23912/9781911396376-3861
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