An update from the Accommodation Panel
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During these tough times I thought it would be good to provide you with an update of what your accommodation panel is doing for you at the moment and what our thinking is.
The accommodation panel is meeting monthly at the moment with our last meeting held on Wednesday (6 May) of this week. Continuing on from our last call, the panel has been working to help you to access the financial support you need, the advocacy you need in order to get this and talking through the implications of COVID-19 for hostels, their staff and guests.
The financial implications are clear as day and the impact thereof globally to hostels outlined in the recent and ongoing COVID-19 research of WYSE Travel Confederation. You can find more information on this research here and please remember to complete the surveys. We need this data to be able to represent the sector.
We have been working with the team at WYSE to help them pull together a financial resources page. This is constantly being updated but if you know of information that should be included, please let us know. The financial resources hub can be found here.
Knowing where to find the information doesn’t help you actually get financial support, so we discussed on our last call that we will work on a framework letter that you can use to send to your politicians. Of course, every country is different so we are aware that these will need to be tailored to your needs.
Furthermore, on the financial side of things, OTA commissions have always been a sizeable bugbear for the industry. Following on from the work that was undertaken on the Sydney Declaration, the panel will be drafting a letter to go to OTAs asking for a reduction in commissions. You will then also be able to use this letter in your negotiations with them. The panel feels that if we do this as a collective, it will have a far bigger impact.
Finally and building on the work of the self-certification programme we need to look at how we as a hospitality industry can take care of our guests and our staff. As we work towards opening our hostels again we need to ensure travelers that hostels will be cleaner and safer than ever before. To this end we will be setting up a working-group to see how we go about doing this. Our current thinking is that we will run a sizeable consumer survey to gauge young travellers opinions, behaviours and motivations with regards to staying in hostels now and into the future.
If you have any questions or suggestions for us please feel free to get in touch via the form below.
Pieter van der Zeeuw, Chairman
CEO, Hans Brinker Hostels
The Accommodation Panel
Kevin McCormick, Head of Commercial Operations, University of Bath
Alex Rivers, Managing Director, Astor Hotels
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