No doubt you and your hotel staff are eagerly preparing for the hustle and bustle that’s about to ensue this season. But is your hotel already fully booked?

Use these 3 tips to attract more guests before the presents go under the tree and keep them past the last sip of champagne on New Year’s.

How to attract those last-minute travellers …

‘Tis the season for snow, shopping and trips to see family.  Most of us will be unwrapping gifts, making snowmen, or conjuring up resolutions over hot (diet) cocoa as we watch the snow fall, right?

Not always. Some of us still won’t know where we are going, who we are seeing, or what we are packing. Especially those well-seasoned, last-minute travellers looking for a good deal.

Tip #1: Update your rates and packages to attract these travellers.

Next to location, price is the biggest decision factor for the 120+ million monthly trivago users, whether they plan ahead or not. That said, don’t sell yourself short either: it’s all about value for money, and a little extra incentive can go a long way. If you’re looking to make your complimentary gift known to trivago users, check out the Hotel News feature. It displays your exclusive offers like courtesy shuttle service or a bottle of egg-nog, prominently on your hotel’s profile.

In the 11th hour they’re seeking out unique-moments in the snow and sun!

Nowadays we crave the unique. Sure some folks are sticklers for routine, but not all of us. Last-minute travellers are out there and they’re a spontaneous bunch. They seek out new, exciting experiences and are not set on one type of destination. New places, old places, warm places and winter wonderlands. It is all pretty appealing. With that in mind, your weather may not be as obvious to travellers as you may think.

Tip #2: Edit your online hotel  to include current, seasonal images.

Keep in mind that the photos have to be High Quality (2000 pixels or more). To help you get started, we suggest that you choose pictures that include the following:

Hotel exterior; palm trees or snow covered rooftops, show off your assets

Amenities; like hot tubs for skiers or an outdoor pool for tanners.

Rooms styled for the season; comfy and cosy bedding versus crisp summery linens

Seasonal landmarks in the hotel’s immediate vicinity, or, as part of the view from a room. For example, if your hotel sits at the bottom of a ski-hill, nothing communicates proximity better than an image shot “through the window”.

– If your website or profile has hi-res and mediocre images, remove the latter as they are doing you a disservice.

– Don’t stop at the photos though. Make sure that all of your facilities appear in your hotel’s profile and website too.

Encourage travellers to stay for a while

Not everyone has a highly detailed agenda prior to booking.  Help them recognize the value of your hotel by creating a suggested itinerary for them. You’d be surprised at how many guests might consider your hotel for an evening stay as they are passing through. If only they knew what was around, they may stay longer.

Tip #3 Ensure your website contains information about local seasonal offerings.

Make sure these are centrally located on your webpage so that they are easy to find.  Ideally you want to tell and show potential guests that this is the hotel for them. If you have profiles on booking sites, you should update those as well. For your website, try adding a list of nearby attractions with links for further information or get more creative. How? You can put together a sample itinerary for weekend or weeklong stays.

Here’s an example to help you get started:

Why not stay awhile?

There’s a lot to see and do nearby.  We’ve put the following itinerary together to help you make the most out of your visit.

Day 1 / Feeling peckish? Join us at the restaurant for our well known dishes like wild rabbit in a claret reduction, artfully prepared by our head chef.

Interested in a soak? We’ve got a spa for that. Renovated early this year, it boasts a Jacuzzi and sauna.

Day 2 / How about a day (and night) on the town? We suggest you visit the Old Towne. Bit of a beer connoisseur? There’s a pub-crawl guide here: LINK

Day 3 / Fancy adventure? There is a quaint goat farm down the road, open to the public. Feel free to pop in for a wine and cheese tasting, or try out their home-made goat’s milk soaps.

If you have a few more minutes to spare, follow the previous tips and get the best out of your last minute holiday travel marketing efforts.

Posting unique rates, quality seasonal photos and offerings will entice guests to book your hotel. Your goal is to guide them through your property and help them see the value in your offer, online. By being creative and specific in your approach, you can attract last-minute travellers and fill those rooms. Adding something as simple as a complimentary treat will make their stay even more favourable, enticing them to come back next year.

Jamie Patterson

Jamie believes that playing host to guests from far and wide enriches the soul. Especially when it means having a full hotel. Born to entrepreneurial parents, she’s passionate about business growth. With a decade of traditional and digital marketing work behind her, she’s joined trivago to demystify metasearch and hotel marketing for you. One blog post at a time.

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