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3 Major Flaws the Hospitality Sector Makes with Group Bookings

Managing group bookings in the hospitality sector has never being an easy task. The more people you have to deal with, the more odd requests there are among the group. However, there are certain things that can be done in order to handle a group more efficiently to reduce your workload and increase the revenue you make in the business.

The 3 points I am going to discuss are what have cropped up in conversation while speaking to many hotel managers, restaurant owners, and activity centre managers. These are our clients who manage a lot of group bookings and in most cases it would amount to 80% of their entire business. The points we will cover are:

  1. Overbooking and why it’s a bad idea
  2. Not having a strict cancellation policy
  3. Not getting paid in advance

Overbooking and why it’s a bad idea

In theory, I should not have to tell anyone why this is a bad idea because we all know it is. Overbooking is the most inefficient way of dealing with group bookings. A manger that does this is leaving his company wide open to compensation claims, upset customers, poor web reviews and increased workload by having to re-book another venue.

I once experienced this myself and to say I was annoyed is an understatement. This has been the norm in some industries for quite some time but the Group System solves this problem by giving you complete control over the exact number of people who were invited and paid so you can control and gauge your groups along with the accommodation/service you intend to provide.

Not having a strict cancellation policy

Groups and group invitees will cancel and frequently do the closer they get to their event date. Surprising enough, the ones that book far in advance are normally the ones to cancel more frequently since everyone’s plan changes over the time period. Upon booking, a cancellation policy should be communicated to a group straight away in order to pre-empt any foreseeable problems from the group.

The group system can help enforce this policy by use of the built in reminders you can set for every group. These reminder emails are fully under your control and have proven to be a great way of helping businesses manage cancellations.

Not getting paid in advance

Some businesses enforce being pre-paid while others are happy with a deposit payment system. If a business is not being prepaid for their groups’ booking reservations, they are losing out on 1,000s of euro each year through lack of cash flow, late cancellations, and no shows on the day. Looking at the bigger picture, this costs billions of euro each year in lost revenue for the industry.

Requiring advance payment has major benefits to your business since it will:

  1. Have the groups confirmed group size weeks in advance.
  2. Allow you to sell off any unused beds, seats, or places the group may have cancelled.
  3. Increase your time frame in order to fill empty slots.
  4. Increase the amount of revenue you can get as you have a longer time-frame to advertise the free slots at a higher price than you would reducing the price last minute to sell it.

Our system fully automates payment collection for businesses and puts no work on the organiser to do it either, all they have to do is input everyone’s email address and the system takes care of everything from there.

Group bookings will always be tough to handle and depending on the type of group, some are a lot more difficult to handle than others. Businesses need to use every opportunity to manage the bookings as efficiently as possible in order to maximise revenue. Unfortunately, this is not the way as many businesses have become accustomed to bad habits they now see as the norm.

Posted by admin on October 24th, 2013 under blog • Comments Off on 3 Major Flaws the Hospitality Sector Makes with Group Bookings


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