Understanding requirements

We started working for this rail industry client in 2008, setting up a preferred hotel programme for them and enabling their network of 20 in-house bookers to secure nearly a thousand bed nights a month using the Inntel booking system. The company also uses our system to book around £250,000 worth of train journeys each year.

In 2015, the client asked for evidence that the hotel rates they were getting via Inntel were comparable to, if not better than, other industry rates available. We agreed to benchmark the client’s rates by undertaking some quantitative research.

Solving problems

The company sends its engineers around the country to work on signalling projects for rail companies.  The engineers will usually be travelling in vans and working long shifts, so their overnight accommodation needs to offer a 24 hour reception, 24 hour room service and easy parking with no height restrictions for taller vehicles. This package of benefits is usually only found in 4* hotels, and these make up the bulk of the hotels on the preferred programme.

For those times when a 4* hotel is not strictly necessary, cheaper alternatives are available. In the past the client had relied heavily on the Premier Inn chain, but Inntel had added what we consider better-value alternatives to the preferred list.

Adding value

To benchmark the hotel list, Inntel selected the client’s top five most-used locations and checked the room rates available on Wednesday nights in two 4* hotels and the Premier Inn in all five locations and for five consecutive weeks. (The Wednesday night was selected as it is usually the busiest nights for hotels, and therefore tends to be the most expensive).

The research data proved conclusively that the Inntel rates are:

  • Up to £100 cheaper than the ‘best available’ rate on the day
  • £40 lower, on average, than other rates offered in the area, and
  • £20 cheaper, on average, than Premier Inn rates

Satisfying customers

Naturally the client was happy and reassured to find they are achieving the best possible rates through Inntel and that their preferred hotel programme is in such good hands.