Are you familiar with the Global Distribution System (GDS)?
If not, it should be on your radar if you're a short term rental property owner.
Placing your properties on the GDS system can have a lot of substantial benefits for both you as a short term let property owner and for your prospective buyers/renters.
To know more about the benefits of the GDS system and what sets it apart from direct bookings, keep on reading.
Why more people are using short term rentals
Before delving fully into the benefits of the GDS system, you must know how it can be relevant for corporate travellers looking for a short term stay.
But to do this, we need to jump back in time. Did you know in 2019 alone, pre-pandemic, over 9 million people took business trips within the UK?
With all those business trips, most people travelling for work were for 1-2 days and often staying in hotels. However, since COVID and the rise of remote meetings, those who aren't conducting their work affairs over Zoom are only choosing corporate travel if they're staying in a more home-like, safer and quieter environment than a typical hotel.
After all, corporate travellers want to feel safe, comfortable, and at peace away from home. They're looking for something more short term, easy to book and accredited by others to provide them with the comfort and confidence to travel again. Because of this, travellers have become a bit pickier and are looking for something more suitable on where to stay.
Moreover, many corporates have mandatory programs that they must follow when booking travel accommodation. Many of their bookings are made through their travel management companies, who book using the GDS. Therefore, there's a constant rise in demand for alternative accommodations.
Previously, alternative accommodations to hotels were never visible or accessible on the GDS system. However, alternative accommodation providers like TrustedStays, have started making a significant impact in helping short term rentals get onto the platform. They help you as a short term property owner, and your guests benefit from the GDS together.
What are the benefits of the GDS for short term property owners?
If you're looking to promote your properties in a big way to the corporate market, then you have to be on the GDS system. In particular, being on it can help you with the following:
Being on the GDS exposes you to all different types of travel markets. For instance, in some months, you might find more leisure travellers wanting to hire your property. Then when it's quiet, your property might be booked by corporations. Therefore it could balance out your calendar bookings, allowing you to diversify your portfolio and increase your revenue stream.
Easy entry and greater access for demand partners and travel agents
Being on the GDS, you can increase your exposure to corporations.
For instance, one example of this is mentioned by Deborah Heather, CEO of Quality in Tourism, "Blue chip companies have a program, where they book. They know to go to the GDS and where their travellers are as it pinpoints them on codes and areas. The way they procure that business to you is because they highlight the request for their beds and bid onto the GDS."
These companies alone are just small examples of how you can gain bookings for domestic and international business travellers. In fact, if you want to get bookings from these directly, the GDS is the only way to go.
After all, many corporations only choose to book their travel and accommodation through the GDS, as it's streamlined. It basically serves as a one stop shop for all of their travel arrangements, such as flights, accommodation and transportation. It's the only way to get these types of guests.
In addition to displaying your property on the GDS, there's a higher chance you'll gain requests for private contracts. Many companies get their business through providers like CVent. Often, businesses want to secure private contracts at a large scale with accommodation suppliers.
This means bookings for short term rentals through platforms like TrustedStays that are directly connected to the GDS; you can gain frequent and large proposal requests.
Deborah Heather, CEO, of Quality in Tourism, explains this a bit better "The way corporates procure that business to you is through RFP processes, saying we want 2,000 room nights in Leeds. All you guys bid, what you want to offer, and you get onto that program."
The automated booking process, instant visibility of your property (and rates), amenities information, and services list give you a much higher chance of securing large scale private contracts with GDS.
What are the benefits of the GDS for buyers?
In addition to renters, the GDS system has the following benefits for buyers:
Provides assurances about safety
When travel buyers and travel management companies book on behalf of their corporate and business clients, they have to provide a duty of care upfront. This means their standards have to be high to ensure their safety needs are met, and they don't risk losing out on their reputation or business.
Moreover, because of COVID, many people are looking for safe and hygienic accommodation. They don't want to stay somewhere that's not well maintained and one that does not comply with their expectations. Properties on the GDS system have many content opportunities to upload information about their property.
Nisha Botevyle, Country Director UK/IE at Sabre, mentioned this in our panel discussion "We are fully aware that people's travel habits have changed in the pandemic. People want to be pickier where they go and do something different. It's not always the standard as before. It goes back to as much content as possible to fulfil the customers' needs."
Because of this, corporate travellers can view the information they want to find like safety, sustainability policies, booking policies, accreditations and more, instilling them to have confidence upfront.
Short term rentals can only exist on the GDS if they have safety and cleanliness assurances in place. Having your properties accredited with companies such as Quality in Tourism can give you the stamp of approval you need to access the GDS and to join TrustedStays. This means corporates and businesses can easily book, as they all have specific standards and safety requirements that have to be met. When compared to hotels, unprofessional let properties and more, they're assured in advance they're staying in a property that's vetted for their safety, hygiene and other policies.
Increased speed and agility
The GDS system can provide business travellers with instant options on availability for short term rentals. It's constantly evolving, hosting multiple properties on the platform and providing bookers with instant updates due to it integrating with property management systems. These updated insights can encourage more bookings as it immediately removes any doubts.
Options for business travellers
The GDS is very efficient for those wanting to undergo business travel. Part of the reason for this is because it aggregates different types of booking information in one space, providing an efficient way to book travel and accommodation from start to finish. For instance, corporate travellers can book flights, car rentals, tickets to nearby attractions and more in the same booking.
What use TrustedStays?
"TrustedStays serves as your digital connection that bridges your industry to the GDS Ecosystem for the very first time." - Merilee Karr.
We allow you to access that instant demand from corporates and gain direct entry to large scale bookings. Our platform also helps you distinguish the higher standards properties with accreditations and more, making sure that your standards are met.
Overall, the GDS is more efficient, automated and cost-effective for short term rental owners than any other OTA. They provide you with large exposure to corporations looking for their employees to travel for corporate stays.
The GDS is constantly adapting, offering more choices for STRs like houses, aparthotels, serviced apartments and more; the demand for these types of accommodation is rapidly rising.
The GDS also creates a sense of confidence and assurance when corporations book onto your property. With the GDS only accepting properties complying with high standards, they make your property more distinguishable to corporations by breaking the myth surrounding short-term rentals.
One of the simplest ways of accessing the GDS is through TrustedStays. When uploading your property on our platform, we provide you with a direct entry point to the GDS system—allowing both corporates to instantly see your rates, amenities and availability, giving you higher chances of maximising your portfolio and securing large scale private contracts.
To learn more about how the GDS and TrustedStays can benefit your short term rental, check out our article.
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