Increase in occupancy is good, but rate increases and revenue is even better. This year we have the best opportunity to show improved profit results from rate improvement. We just have to do better in sales to make those projections come through.
The group market is where sales teams need to beef up. Recent reports say that the ADR for transients is well above what it is for group ADR. While the former has been running at around 4- to 5-percent growth, group ADR is only in the area of about 1- to 2-percent growth. therefore, rates quoted for groups need some attention, which, translated, means raise them!
Hotel sales staffs need to do more in the area of advance bookings, especially for the next one to two years. We have to pay attention to what will happen within the next couple of years with regard to competing hotels. The pipeline has been growing and investors, developers, owners and operators will, for sure, be seeking to develop new properties. This always seems to happen in our industry as soon as we have an excellent year in building occupancy and higher rates. So, we need to be on the lookout for more competition coming in within the next couple of years.
GMs should be continually talking to sales folks about getting the rate up. Rate should be king this coming year because that is what generates profit for a property.
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