In another positive sign for travel demand, the week in travel stats saw new research that pointed to increased use of GDS among travel agents, as well as some interesting trends in hotels.
51 Percent of Agents Report GDS Use Up
TravelClick and Phoenix Marketing International have released a new report charting the use of GDS among travel agents over the past two years. The 2015 Global Travel Agent GDS study surveyed over 900 travel agents worldwide who use Amadeus, Sabre and Travelport.
Over half of agents stated that they actively book away from hotels that do not offer their best rates within the GDS, and if there is a better rate that’s outside of the GDS, a travel agent will book through that channel.
Amenities are still driving global travel agent behavior, with complimentary breakfast and free Internet scoring the highest ratings. Among those surveyed who indicated that amenities and offers geared toward the traveler are appealing, the most appealing amenities include free breakfast meals (83 percent), special rates (77 percent), free Internet (72 percent), free upgrades (62 percent), free night stays (50 percent) and star / consumer review ratings (43 percent).
Brunswick, Coos Bay Top Destinations Under $100 Per Night
This week in travel also saw some interesting research in terms of hotels. First up, Hotels.com published a selection of destinations with hotels under $100 per night.
Brunswick, GA ($80) – On the Southeast corner of Georgia, this peaceful waterfront town allows visitors to capture the sunset at Great Dunes Beach Park, snag fresh seafood at Indigo Coastal Shanty or take a trip out to historical Saint Simons Island.
Coos Bay, OR ($97) – Coos Bay is the largest city on the Oregon Coast, and home to a host of fishing, swimming and other outdoor activities. Shore Acres State Park provides breathtaking views of the ocean where guests can catch a glimpse of a variety of marine animals.
Ogden, UT ($91) – About ten miles east of the Great Salt Lake lies Ogden with three award-winning ski resorts. The town is also chock-full of historical museums, art galleries and theatrical performances year-round.
Leadville, CO ($95) – Surrounded with snow-capped peaks, the city is a ski bum's playground. Once part of the silver mining boom, this city preserved in time is a great place to get a peek into the history of the Wild West.
Mesa, AZ ($100) – Mesa is a budget-friendly location just a short drive from Phoenix, with many of its own offerings such as the Red Rocks Music Festival, Salt River Tubing, the Commemorative Air Force Museum and a plethora of authentic Mexican cuisine.
Greenwood Village, CO ($96) – Just outside of Denver lies Greenwood Village, Colorado, a small town with panoramic views of The Front Range – a mountain range part of the Southern Rocky Mountains. Known for its biking trails, delicious cuisine, art and music, this metropolitan suburb is a great alternative vacation destination.
8 in 10 Would Choose Clean Hotel Room Over Internet
Also in hotels, this week's research gave another reminder of the importance of a clean hotel room with a new survey commissioned by CLR. Cleanliness is one of the most important factors to vacation lodgers, with 86 percent reporting cleanliness as one of the top criteria they look for when reading online hotel or vacation rental reviews.
Conducted by TNS, the survey showed that eight out of 10 (80 percent) vacation lodgers would rather give up Internet access for the duration of their vacation than stay in a dirty rental or hotel.
Additionally, over half (55 percent) of vacation lodgers believe hotels are cleaner than vacation rentals, while nearly half (45 percent) report vacation rentals are cleaner than hotels. Over one-third (35 percent) of vacation lodgers believe it's OK to leave hotel rooms messier than vacation rentals.
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