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Travel agents are looking for a “cure” to prevent clients from booking Russian hotels directly

A survey in the tg channel for tourism professionals “Roof of TourDom B2B” showed that 50% of the travel agents who responded more or less actively sell tours around Russia. Another 39% do this occasionally, and 7% fundamentally do not take on such requests.

Despite the fact that the majority does not refuse clients interested in vacationing at Russian resorts, representatives of tourism retail note that such work is often done “in vain.” The reason is not the most friendly policy of hotels that offer better prices directly to tourists. As a result, clients sometimes receive free advice from travel agents and then book rooms on the websites of hotels recommended to them.

The problem is perhaps as old as the existence of the organized tourism market. However, judging by the comments on the topic in the tg channel “Roof of TourDom B2B”, travel agents are gradually adapting to the situation. For example, some travel agents, in order to minimize the likelihood of unproductive work, first compare prices from tour operators with direct offers from hotels. The selections for clients include only those hotels that are really profitable for them to sell. They also use this method to save themselves from “idle” activities: free selection of a tour around Russia – only for regular clients, while those who apply for the first time are asked to pay for the work of finding a suitable hotel. And one of the participants in the discussion has a philosophical approach to the problem: “Some tourists do not even hide the fact that they are only interested in hotels in order to then book directly. I never dare such people, I don’t blacklist them. But next time they come for foreign tours and buy, recommend us to their friends. I regard free selection as an additional service that works for the image of a travel agent.”

By the way, two discussion participants cited cases known to them where tourists, who had seemingly profitably booked rooms directly in Russian hotels, found themselves at a serious loss. During the high season, hotels experienced overbooking – more rooms were sold than were available. It was direct clients who were subject to cancellation. The secret is simple – for failure to provide places from the quota allocated to tour operators or online travel agencies, partners will have to pay a large fine. But refusing a guest who purchased accommodation on the hotel website is usually cheaper.

Source: Tourdom

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