Booking.com shares experiences of a year and offers hope for 2021 with initiatives for accommodation partners


When a subsequent wave of COVID-19 struck Vietnam again earlier this year, travel continued to be one of the most impacted industries. As an industry that used to hugely depend on in-person contact and experiences, businesses were forced to innovate to survive - with the utmost goal of providing safety and peace of mind to travellers.



To help our accommodation partners on this front, Booking.com, one of the world’s leading digital travel platforms, has put together important tools and information to help them become better prepared to serve travellers and their evolving needs.


Anthony Lu, Regional Director, Vietnam at Booking.com said, “At Booking.com, our utmost concern is for the safety and security of our customers, partners and colleagues. As the situation evolves, we continue to update the support we provide, including bringing our partners in Vietnam the digital tools and insights they need to effectively respond to the evolving travel environment. With technology at our core, we are relentlessly innovating our product to drive new business opportunities for them. The road to recovery will be long, but we are committed to rebuilding travel together.”


The global pandemic has presented a new reality, with travellers having different priorities than they did before. Booking.com data shows there are certain essential needs that are common to all types of travellers.


Updated health & safety protocols 


Is information an amenity? In a world that is filled with misinformation and changes every day, it’s probably the most valuable amenity. Keep visitors updated with the latest protocols and be present through diverse online channels including booking platforms and social media. Providing information around new cleaning protocols is also a necessity these days to boost traveler confidence, meet demands and expectations that are top of mind for travelers at this time. 



Booking.com has been taking a three-fold approach to its support for partners and their recovery.  This includes advising its partners on implementing health & safety measuresoffering flexibility in booking and price optimization to drive demand for properties. Hoteliers and property owners can select the different health & safety measures they are taking in areas such as hygiene, sanitization, social distancing and food safety amongst others which are then displayed on their property page on Booking.com to equip travelers with transparency while making a travel decision.



Some of the health and safety measures that the properties can select from are:


Safety Features 

  • Staff follow all safety protocols as directed by local authorities
  • Shared stationery such as printed menus, magazines, pens and paper removed
  • Hand sanitizer in room and common areas
  • Process in place to check health of guests
  • First-aid kit available


Social Distancing

  • Contactless check-in/check-out
  • Cashless payment available
  • Social distancing rules
  • Mobile app for room service
  • Screens or physicals barriers placed between staff and guests in appropriate areas


Health & Hygiene

  • Use of cleaning chemicals that are effective against Coronavirus
  • Room is disinfected daily
  • Linens, towels and laundry washed in accordance with WHO guidelines
  • Room sealed for guests after cleaning


Food Safety

  • Social distancing in dining areas
  • Food can be delivered to guests room

 

Flexibility is a must


Booking.com data from the Future of Travel report* shows that 71% of Vietnamese travellers want travel booking platforms to increase transparency on booking policies, so that they have more flexibility when it comes to modifying their bookings. Furthermore, 27% consider refundable accommodation a must-have for their next trip, as do 35%when it comes to the flexibility to change dates without being charged.  To cater to this demand shift, Booking.com has introduced tools and discounts like the ‘Flexible - 1 Day’ policy which gives guests more flexibility and allows them to cancel their booking for free up to one day before the arrival date. 



Last minute and in advance


With so much uncertainty, it’s understandable that so many travelers are still booking last minute and far ahead of time. To maximize visibility to travelers, Booking.com allows properties to proactively load availability up to 16 months in advance and add ‘Last Minute’ and ‘Early Booker’ deals for the stay dates that suit their needs.


Building Domestic Demand


With travel behaviour shifting, travellers are exploring more destinations closer to home. There is a preference for driving by car and escaping to the outdoors, as well as growing interest in secluded destinations that can provide fresh air and relaxation away from the crowds. Booking.com has introduced several features on its platform to help bookers make easier, well informed decisions like recommending nearby popular destinations in-country, making it easier to find properties based on their proximity to beaches or nature, recommending nearby similar destinations in case of low availability, introducing new search filters and COVID-related content for health and safety amongst others.



At Booking.com we are doing everything we can to support our property partners by working to secure and deliver customers to them, as it becomes possible for travelers to experience the world again. As travel begins to emerge from this difficult period, we will continue to evolve our support as a part of our commitment to rebuilding together.


CONTACT DETAILS
For further information, contact the Booking.com Vietnam 
Press Office: Ha Hoang, minhha.hoang@edelman.com, +84 915 108 706

About Booking.com
Part of Booking Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: BKNG), Booking.com’s mission is to make it easier for everyone to experience the world. By investing in the technology that helps take the friction out of travel, Booking.com seamlessly connects millions of travelers with memorable experiences, a range of transportation options and incredible places to stay - from homes to hotels and much more. As one of the world’s largest travel marketplaces for both established brands and entrepreneurs of all sizes, Booking.com enables properties all over the world to reach a global audience and grow their businesses. Booking.com is available in 44 languages and offers more than 28 million total reported accommodation listings, including more than 6.5 million listings of homes, apartments and other unique places to stay. No matter where you want to go or what you want to do, Booking.com makes it easy and backs it all up with 24/7 customer support.
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METHODOLOGY / NOTES TO EDITORS
*Research commissioned by Booking.com and conducted among a sample of adults who have traveled for business or leisure in the past 12 months, and must be planning to travel in the next 12 months (if/once travel restrictions are lifted). In total 20,934 respondents across 28 countries and territories were polled (including  999 from USA, 496 from Canada, 497 from Mexico, 997 from Colombia, 999 from Brazil, 499 from Argentina, 995 from Australia, 499 from New Zealand, 999 from Spain, 996 from Italy, 996 from France, 999 from UK, 996 from Germany, 498 from Netherlands, 499 from Denmark, 499 from Sweden, 498 from Croatia, 1001 from Russia, 498 from Israel, 997 from India, 994 from China, 499 from Hong Kong, 497 from Thailand, 496 from Singapore, 499 from Taiwan, 997 from South Korea, 500 from Vietnam and 995 from Japan). Respondents completed an online survey in July 2020.