We've collected all the important words and terms you may need to navigate confidently in the hospitality industry.
Hotel Industry Terms
It refers to guaranteed hotel rooms purchased and held by distribution partners, such as tour operators, wholesalers, online travel agencies or travel agents.
It means the guest physically arriving at the hotel and completing the check-in process which includes checking guest identification and issuing the room keycard.
The vacant rooms available for guests to reserve.
BAR (best available rate)
The lowest priced rate plan with flexible conditions published for all guests.
It is a rate plan in which the hotel aside from the accommodation also provides breakfast for the guests. The abbreviation of the term is B&B.
It refers to making selected rooms unavailable or blocked for a certain date. Housekeeping or maintenance work is a common reason for this.
It indicates the meals the guest is provided by the host at the hotel besides accommodation. "Half board" includes breakfast and dinner, while "full board" also includes lunch for the guest.
Booking pace or pickup shows the rate at which reservations are created for a certain date. It is an important metric for revenue management for better forecasting and identifying trends for periods like weekdays, weekends, months or seasons.
It is the period between the time the reservation is created by the guests and the arrival date at the hotel.
It is a small hotel which has between 10 and 100 rooms, offering a unique decor and personalised service.
A tool that allows the update of a rate plan or restriction for multiple room types simultaneously.
The buyer's journey is the process buyers go through to become aware of, consider and evaluate, and decide to purchase a new product or service.
The set of rules that the hotel applies in case of cancellation of a reservation. We differentiate flexible and non flexible cancellation policies.
Controlling the room inventory and rates on all distribution channels such as the hotel's own website and online travel agencies. Utilising technology for channel management saves administration time and reduces manual errors.
It is the policy for accommodating children to stay in the same room with their parents. It is usually separated between infants who can stay free of charge and children who can stay for a reduced price depending on their age. Hotels only accepting guests with a required age limit are called "adult only".
It's a local government fee that is compulsory to pay for guests. The amount is typically defined by the number of persons and the length of stay. It is used to support the development of tourism in the area.
Closed to arrival (CTA)
A restriction to control that arrival (check-in) is not allowed for certain dates. It is commonly used to during holiday periods or popular local events. Often used together with close to departure (CTD) restriction.
Closed to departure (CTD)
A restriction to control that departure (check-out) is not allowed for certain dates. It is commonly used to during holiday periods or popular local events. Often used together with close to arrival (CTA) restriction.
That marketing fee that a distribution channel, such as a platform like Booking.com or Expedia, receives from a hotel for commercialising accommodation and other services.
A competitive set or CompSet are selected hotels that considered as direct competitors to your own hotel. It is used for benchmarking purposes, comparing products, prices and performance to a competitor hotel.
Conference is an event that covers several days and it designed for a large group of people not only for company members but also speakers and guests.
The ratio of buyers converted into paying customers. In terms of website conversion for a hotel, it is the number of actual bookers divided by the total number of online visitors for a given period.
It represent a segment for hotels that is the result of contractual partnership with companies. Corporate guests can book their accommodation at a contracted rate, generating a reliable revenue source for hotels even during off-season periods.
A small vacation rental near a natural attraction like a lake, forest or mountain.
Sales technique to encourage customers to purchase additional products or services along with the one originally selected. In hotel this would mean enhancing the reservation with addition services, such as catering or wellness treatment.
It is the last interaction during the guest cycle. During the check-out process the guest leaves the room and settles the outstanding balance.
A guarantee requested from the guest upon check-in to cover ensure that the final bill will be settled and to cover for any room damage that may occur.
Reservation which are directly created through the hotel's own website and not through an intermediary.
The distribution or sales channel is the platform where the hotel sells rooms. Examples include the hotel's own website, online travel agencies, wholesalers or corporate partners.
It the ideal combination of both online and offline distribution (sales) channels for optimising the hotel's revenue.
A shared room typically in hostels with multiple beds sold as separate units. A dormitory can be female only, male only and mixed.
A revenue technique when rooms rates are updated regularly with forecasted demand rather than applying static rates. Dynamic prices are synchronised through a channel manager to online distribution channels directly from the property management system.
A promotion with a discounted rate, only available for advanced bookings with a release period where a minimum number of days are left between creating the reservation and the check-in date.
End of day (EOD)
A process performed in a property management software to mark the end of the financial business day for the hotel.
Estimated time of arrival
The estimated time when the guest will arrive at the hotel for check-in.
Exhibition is essentially a trade show where a company promotes products or services buyers. The focus of the event is on sales and professional networking.
Online platform for hotels to configure their listing in terms of rates, availability, restrictions, promotions and content. This can be managed manually or via a channel manager. In the world of online travel examples are Expedia Partner Central and Agoda YCS.
A promotional rate available for guests only for a limited time.
It is a collection of charges and payments made by a guest or a partner account (corporate, tour operator).
Predictions on travel demand, hotel occupancy and revenue based on historical data.
Foreign Inbound Traveler (FIT)
It is an individual traveler from abroad not part of a tour group.
The hotel department where customers arrive where they complete the check-in process. Receptionists or front desk agents working here will assist guests with requests, problems and complaints.
General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)
A regulation in EU law on data protection and privacy for all individuals within the European Union (EU) and the European Economic Area (EEA).
Global Distribution System (GDS)
A reservation platform that was originally developed for traditional travel agencies to be able to reserve airlines tickets on a global scale. Later also hotels, car rental companies and cruise lines were added to the system. The major GDS companies are Travelport (Galileo, Apollo and WorldSpan), SABRE and Amadeus.
A reservation made for a group of travellers for multiple rooms.
The guest perception of the hotel with all interactions involved before, during and after the stay. This includes the booking process on the website, the check-in experience, the friendliness of the hotel staff, the overall cleanliness, the value for money, the quality of the room and other services.
A budget accommodation type providing lodging, typically in shared dormitory rooms, mainly for backpackers and students.
Multiple hotels which are part of a chain or a group and are operated under the same brand.
The team responsible for the cleanliness and hygiene of the hotel rooms and public spaces.
The daily list containing rooms to be cleaned by the housekeeping staff. It is broken down between new arrivals and daily cleanings.
Incentive is a travel reward from a company to a member or a team for excellent professional performance. The travel and accommodation costs are covered by the company to promote employee loyalty.
A hotel with a unique brand and individual management that is not part of an international hotel group or chain.
A promotion with a discounted rate, only available for last minute bookings when the reservation date is close to the actual check-in date.
Listing is an offline or online advertisement with the aim to sell rooms for a certain period of time.
A marketing program that encourages and rewards guests for repeated sales. Examples from international chains are Hilton Honours and Marriott Rewards.
The team responsible for the ensuring the high-quality operation of services and processes that support the hotel business.
Master price or rate is the default rate plan from which all other linked rate plans are calculated from. Once a modification is done in the master price, all linked rate plans will change according to the rate multiplier settings.
A business event when professionals from an organisation come together to discuss key challenges or goals. Meetings are typically single day events held in hotel conference rooms.
Meetings, Incentives, Conferences, and Exhibitions (MICE)
It is a group segment for hotels when business travellers plan, book and organises a professional event. MICE represents a profitable demand for hotels using the banquet facilities as well as accommodation.
It is an online platform that enables bookers to view multiple hotels and compare the room rates on the different distribution channels. Examples include TripAdvisor, Trivago and Google Hotel Finder.
The end of day process in a property management system which shows a summary of the transactions that took place in the last 24 hours.
A guest with a confirmed reservation not arriving at the hotel without any previous notice or cancellation.
Online travel agency (OTA)
An online platform offering travel products for guests including accommodation, airline tickets and car rental. The abbreviation commonly used is OTA. Examples include Booking.com, Expedia, Agoda, Airbnb and several country or region specific sites.
This refers to a price that is not made publicly available for all guests. It requires guests to join a member only program (such as Genius loyalty program by Booking.com) or enter a coupon code on the booking engine.
It is the technique to overfilling your room capacity and selling more rooms that physically available in the hotel. The goal os to maximise revenue anticipating that a certain percentage of reservations will be cancelled or no show.
An offer that includes multiple components, such as accommodation, meal, catering or an organised tour, being commercialised under a single price.
It is the international phrase for "passenger" in the travel industry. It is an abbreviation for persons or guests.
The set of rules the hotel applies regarding payment terms for a reservation. This can be a partial or full advanced payment or a credit card guarantee with payment upon check-out.
Payment Services Directive 2 (PSD2)
PSD2 is a European Union (EU) initiative that promotes safer online payment via increased security and foster innovation while ensuring a level playing field for all competitors.
Point of sales (POS)
Indicates the place where a commercial transaction is completed by a customer. In a hotel a POS can be a restaurant, bar or spa.
A unique identification number for each hotel in property management systems and OTA extranets.
The maximum price of a hotel room officially published from which discounts are negotiable. It may vary depending on the room type and season.
Applying restrictions to rate plans for filtering out reservations for high demand periods. Restrictions may include minimum night stay, closed to arrival/departure or non refundable cancellation term.
Linking rate plans to the master rate which means that a modification in the master rate will be reflected in all connected rate plans based on the reate modifier settings. This makes pricing more efficient and less time consuming.
It is a pre-set rule for how linked rate plans are calculated from the master price. The modifier can be an increase or decrease with a fixed value or a percentage.
It is a strategy when the same price and booking conditions are published for a particular room type on all distribution channels. This creates pricing consistency therefore strengthening guest loyalty.
It is the price or a package offer for which a hotel room is sold.
The time limit defined in days between the reservation creation date and the check-in date that the hotel sets for a distribution channel.
An arrangement to have a room held for your use at a later time.
A guest having stayed at the same hotel multiple time.
It is the technique to understand, foresee and react to travel demand to maximise the hotel's revenue. The goal is to sell the right product, at the right time, at the right price, to the right customer, on the right distribution channel.
The maximum number of guests to be accommodated in a certain room. This hotels this is usually broken down between adults, children and infants.
It is a rate plan that does not include any meal plan, only accommodation.
It is the category of rooms commercialised together because they share similar elements in terms of occupancy, size, bed setup and amenities.
A fully furbished apartment available for short term rental.
A person or a company that comes up with holiday ideas, designs the travel itinerary, contracts the services and creates the package tours.
A person or a company that sells package tours created by tour operators to customers.
Sales technique to encourage customers to purchase a more high-en product than originally selected. In hotel this would mean reserving a superior category room type.
Value added tax (VAT)
It is a consumption tax added to a products net price whenever a value is added in the supply chain, from production until the actual sales. VAT is commonly used in the countries of the European Union (EU).
A guest without a previous reservation arrives at the hotel and requests a room.
An intermediary company that purchases hotel rooms in bulk to commercialise them through travel agencies and OTAs. An example of this model is Hotel beds.