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Tips for last-minute reservation cancellations

One of the worst problems that may face any accommodation facility or hotel is last-minute cancellations. Since every facility aims for reaching the highest occupancy rate possible, unexpected cancellations of reservations may turn determined goals upside down. In addition, this not only causes the rooms to remain vacant, but it also disrupts the plans based on expected occupancy rates, putting hotel runners and managers in a difficult situation

Under normal conditions, cancellations are a fact of the accommodation & hotel management industry. For any period; cancellation of reservation by a certain number of guests due to unexpected events like flight cancellations, last-minute schedule changes, health problems is foreseeable and can be taken precaution against. For cases affecting a larger audience, however, reservation cancellations may exceed acceptable rates, like 20% or 30%, posing a serious problem to the affected business.

Then, what should you do in such cases?

Sell vacant rooms again

Since the priority goal is to keep the occupancy rate high, employing special last-minute campaigns to offer for resale the rooms that become vacant due to cancelled reservations will prove one of the most appropriate actions to take. If you are using HotelRunner, it will only take seconds to perform this action and you may announce these campaigns instantly on social media.

Create social coupons

While you launch last-minute campaigns and announce on social media, use of social coupons may also prove a very effective method to swiftly increase the number of reservations you receive. Thanks to the social coupon and promotions feature offered by HotelRunner you will not only disseminate special campaigns on social media but also promote your guests to share these campaigns with their friends so that they enjoy special discounts.

Learn reasons of cancellation

Contact the people who cancel their reservations to learn why they cancel, so that you may receive valuable information that you can put to use for the next period. By learning whether the root of the problem is your business, their personal reasons or any other reason, you will discover the measures you can take to prevent recurrence of the reason of cancellation.

Rectify any misinformation

On the other hand, contacting the people who cancel their reservation may allow you to make a part of them give up on their decision of cancellation. If the cancellation is caused particularly due to a misunderstanding or misinformation, you may convince your customer that there is no problem necessitating the cancellation.

If a problem leading high cancellation rates is caused by misinformation, you may identify the relevant problem and employ social media or other marketing channels to announce to your guests that their concern will not actually affect them.

Ensure return of the cancelling customers

Although the customers who request cancellation may not be the guests of your facility this time no matter how hard you try, it is up to you to ensure that they will return in the next period. You may offer your customers who have booked reservation the chance to receive a part of the cancellation deduction as a discount that will apply in their next visit. In this way, it will be possible to host them at another, more appropriate time and to not lose these customers for good.

All the tips we list above are actually the details that you can easily manage on HotelRunner. If you wish, please take a look at the features of HotelRunner to see for yourself what advantages it offers will benefit you.

Ali Beklen

Managing Partner

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