Here’s a quick question for you. Would you buy a travel subscription service that allowed you to pay a one-off price to stay at a pre-selected hotel chain in any location around the world?
With multiple businesses angling towards subscription-based travel models from 2021 onwards, this got us thinking and chatting with our own clients about the possibility of a ‘Netflix for hotels’ scheme in the future. While we’ve originally talked about travel subscription services in the hotel and hospitality industry before, we wanted a fresh take direct from hoteliers in the business to find out what they thought and shed more light on the topic.
Point A Hotels, an affordable growing hotel chain with properties across the UK including London, Edinburgh and Glasgow, seemed like the perfectly-suited business for a travel subscription, and we were keen to gain insight into what they thought about this new regime.
We caught up with Nic Wenn, Managing Director of Point A Hotels, for his thoughts on these burning questions.
1.Do you think travel consumers will be willing to commit to subscriptions post-Covid?
“Our sector has been rocked by low consumer confidence, meaning bookings have dried up as guests guard against the risk of having to cancel their trips,” explains Wenn.
“Designing a successful subscription model will therefore depend on the flexibility it affords consumers. If it allows them to have greater control over when and where they travel, then it could well prove a more COVID-friendly alternative to the traditional one-off booking.”
2.Do subscription models align to any customer demographic in particular (luxury, budget) or do you think it’s an opportunity for all?
“COVID-19 changed the way we commute, but we believe this has created a unique opportunity for hoteliers. Business travellers don’t want to spend hours on public transport every day of the week, and are increasingly looking for midweek city stays as a means of managing their travelling requirements.
Hoteliers can tap into this by offering the new type of commuter a degree of stability via affordable, flexible subscription models that enable them to drop in and out for a night or two at their own pace.
At Point A, we’re looking forward to adapting our own products to best serve a post-pandemic world. Creating a subscription based model for would-have-been commuters might just be the start of the innovations.”
3.What are your thoughts of TripAdvisor’s new subscription plans? How will this align/or clash with hotels’ own loyalty programs?
“At Point A, the onus is on rebuilding our occupancy rates bit by bit. This won’t be a quick process, and any innovations – such as new subscription services from the likes of TripAdvisor, which help rebuild consumer confidence in the industry – will be warmly welcomed by hoteliers in the short-term.”
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