Book direct – a manager’s musings…

… About benefits of reserving directly with a hotel or inn…

To continue the topic of online booking (see blog titled “Online Booking”)… I have recently downloaded an app  to see what rates hotels are offering last minute on any given day in this area. It’s always good for us to see what’s available and compare it to what Harding House is offering.

For example the other night we had one room available at our regular (for the month of August) rate of $240 per night plus tax. Just to make sure that $240 was a fair last minute rate I checked my app and found that the closest property, a chain hotel in an industrial park, was offering $379 plus tax, no breakfast and no convenience to evening activities. This is crazy to me…

The reality is that the “Online Booking Agents”(Expedia, Priceline, Orbitz, Booking.com, etc…) now control the market to such a degree that they know what’s available and when very little is available they raise the rates. Harding House does not offer rooms through any OTA’s at this time. There are pluses and minuses to this…..Harding House can’t use the OTA’s massive marketing reach to grab those last minute reservations. However on the flip side we strive to offer a fair rate based on experience and choose not to play the “set high and then slash it” game or the “only 5 rooms left in the city, let’s hike up the rate!”.

All and all of course we appreciate when guests plan and book in advance but even for last minute reservations don’t get sucked into the apps and sites that say they have the best rates. Harding House doesn’t offer rooms to these sites because it puts our small company at an unfair disadvantage.

So tell your friends and colleagues to book directly with us! (and Like, Share and Mention FaceBook for an extra $5 off per night!)