Weekend Rate vs midweek

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JBloggs

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So what is the consensus...Is it better to have a lower midweek rate? What issues have you come across with a lower midweek rate, ahem a higher weekend rate? Is this a battle with guests, or is it just common sense since this is the way it is mostly everywhere in the world?
 

Samster

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I think that it can totally depend on your location and guest demographic. We actually had more guests Wed-Friday than on the weekend. Sundays were a really slow day for us unless we had biz guests checking in to get a jump on Monday. I actually let most folks have a late check-out on Sunday for that reason. Most biz guests would opt for a Monday check-in if they were here at the beginning of the week.
So, I just kept the rates the same. We did offer specific discounts all the time and specials from time to time to try and get more rooms during slower periods.
 

EmptyNest

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I always had the same rate I don't care when it is. I did the same amount of work no matter what the day.
 

egoodell

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We have been busy weekdays as well as weekends. It does make a difference to our guests that the weekday rate is lower. I think it helps a little but not all that much. Everyone else here does it so it's expected. But it's only lower by about a bottle of wine.
RIki
 

Innkeeper To Go

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Have never had a battle over this. If your weekends are busy and your weekdays are slow, by all means reduce rates midweek. Or raise your weekend rates slightly, if you can.
Another alternative is to keep your rates flat but to offer specials midweek. Personally, I prefer to tier the rates and keep the specials as a means to incent 3-night stays.
 

JBloggs

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Thanks.
We actually have about as much midweek as weekend as well (except for event weekends). Just wondering what the mind set was on this practice. Obv if you are in a saturated B&B market then you would need to do what Rome is doing.
I just found another B&B that opened in a nearby city with no online reservations, so I am reworking the home page to display that you can make a booking any time online.
See there ya go, there is a money saver, don't HAVE any availability calendar or online system, how much does that save an inn per year? Or better yet, how much does that COST an inn per year? :)
I will continue to offer the book online special rate weekend or midweek...good info though everyone, thanks.
 

Morticia

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Other than the caller who wanted to know why our rates went UP on the weekends when he had just spent a weekend in DC at $99/night, everyone seems to get that a tourist area has lower rates midweek. If you do a mostly biz business then you can lower your rates on weekends to get more touristy travel.
 

MTLLodge

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I am the only one here at the lake that has online reservations. There is one other B&B here and they don't have it either. I get alot of calls from people asking about my rates. Good God if you could see the places they have here, (check it out on the web). We do offer the nicest place to stay, and I'm not saying this because it is my place. It is clean (I clean it) and we don't have dead mice smell like I hear about the other places. But yet people want to stuff people in like sardines, and pay $50 a night. Not going to happen here. Now my question to you ..... what do i do? Is it normal to be this slow the first year? Do I give it away? In the 10 months since I opened, I have had 8, thats right eight rooms nights. Any ideals? Biggest weekend coming up and I have NOTHING!
Since the new website people have looked longer. And since being on Bed and Breakfast nothing but a few and I mean a few lookers. H E L P!!!
 

Morticia

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I am the only one here at the lake that has online reservations. There is one other B&B here and they don't have it either. I get alot of calls from people asking about my rates. Good God if you could see the places they have here, (check it out on the web). We do offer the nicest place to stay, and I'm not saying this because it is my place. It is clean (I clean it) and we don't have dead mice smell like I hear about the other places. But yet people want to stuff people in like sardines, and pay $50 a night. Not going to happen here. Now my question to you ..... what do i do? Is it normal to be this slow the first year? Do I give it away? In the 10 months since I opened, I have had 8, thats right eight rooms nights. Any ideals? Biggest weekend coming up and I have NOTHING!
Since the new website people have looked longer. And since being on Bed and Breakfast nothing but a few and I mean a few lookers. H E L P!!!.
How are the other places doing this year? Are you seeing or hearing that they are full while you still have no guests? Are you working with them for overflow if they are full? How did the guests who did stay find you? Can you get the local rag to write something up about you that might get picked up? Did you write something up when you opened and get it in the paper?
What's your 'hook'? There are tons of newspapers out there looking to write about something 'different'.
 

Innkeeper To Go

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I am the only one here at the lake that has online reservations. There is one other B&B here and they don't have it either. I get alot of calls from people asking about my rates. Good God if you could see the places they have here, (check it out on the web). We do offer the nicest place to stay, and I'm not saying this because it is my place. It is clean (I clean it) and we don't have dead mice smell like I hear about the other places. But yet people want to stuff people in like sardines, and pay $50 a night. Not going to happen here. Now my question to you ..... what do i do? Is it normal to be this slow the first year? Do I give it away? In the 10 months since I opened, I have had 8, thats right eight rooms nights. Any ideals? Biggest weekend coming up and I have NOTHING!
Since the new website people have looked longer. And since being on Bed and Breakfast nothing but a few and I mean a few lookers. H E L P!!!.
MTLLodge said:
In the 10 months since I opened, I have had 8, thats right eight rooms nights. Any ideals? Biggest weekend coming up and I have NOTHING!
Since the new website people have looked longer. And since being on Bed and Breakfast nothing but a few and I mean a few lookers. H E L P!!!
Morticia is right about the papers. Write up something interesting and you'll likely get it published. If tourists are coming to your area, you have to make sure they know who you are.
How/where are you marketing yourself now?
 

MTLLodge

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I'm on Bed and Breakfast also the lake chamber, neither has helped. I blog,Twitter and facebook.
 

Innkeeper To Go

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I'm on Bed and Breakfast also the lake chamber, neither has helped. I blog,Twitter and facebook..
Are tourists still coming to your area? If so, where are they coming from? The chamber or your state tourism board (or state B&B association) might be able to help you with that.
Figure out where your potential guests are coming from and create a buzz there. Write up press releases for all the local daily and weekly newspaper of that town/area. Do it for each town area.
You are invisible until you get a stream of guests to create a buzz. You have to generate your own buzz to start out. Press releases need to be your best friend right now.
Are you doing google pay-per-clicks or any kind of online advertising?
 

MTLLodge

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Tuesday Acorn has a press release webinar. I'll "be" there. Thanks
I really don't see the need to use Google pay per click. Could you tell me why it would be good?
 

Innkeeper To Go

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Tuesday Acorn has a press release webinar. I'll "be" there. Thanks
I really don't see the need to use Google pay per click. Could you tell me why it would be good?.
Take the info you get from that webinar and be ready to run with it. You will be amazed at what press releases can do for you if you target them to the right markets. Before the webinar, try figuring out where you need to reach the press. Identify the weeklies that are read by your target guests and make sure they're reading about your your area or your recipes or your specials or your renovations or whatever you can think of to write.
Pay-per-click is the name of the game online. Until you are generating enough hits to your site on your own, advertising online will bring those folks to your site. Right now, you need this. Remember you are invisible until guests know you. You have to be aggressive with marketing in the beginning. Later you may very well find you don't need to do this. But now, it can bring you guests pretty quickly. You've got a new website; flaunt it.
Acorn can help you pay-per-clicks but I'll bet you'll find some threads here about that, too.
 

Morticia

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Tuesday Acorn has a press release webinar. I'll "be" there. Thanks
I really don't see the need to use Google pay per click. Could you tell me why it would be good?.
MTLLodge said:
I really don't see the need to use Google pay per click. Could you tell me why it would be good?
You have no guests. That's the reason right there.
 

Morticia

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Tuesday Acorn has a press release webinar. I'll "be" there. Thanks
I really don't see the need to use Google pay per click. Could you tell me why it would be good?.
You might also want to get listed on hotel booking sites. (I know, not my usual song and dance but you need some exposure.)
 

Innkeeper To Go

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Tuesday Acorn has a press release webinar. I'll "be" there. Thanks
I really don't see the need to use Google pay per click. Could you tell me why it would be good?.
You might also want to get listed on hotel booking sites. (I know, not my usual song and dance but you need some exposure.)
.
Booking dot com only charges 10% commission. Don't know if any Europeans at all go to that area, but they're very big in Europe.
 

Joey Camb

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I agree Booking.com or Lateroom (Laterooms is huge in the UK but is worldwide Booking.com huge in the UK and europe so a better bet for you) Did you say you have a web site? and or online booking? Are there any local businesses that you could court for a regular trade ie we gaurantee you this rate all year round if you always book with us as your first choice. Also how do you get on with the other local accomodation providers? could you start a referal network for busy times? Do you have a tourist info bureau that people ring up to ask where to book if they want to stay locally if so get round there with a hamper!
 

wendydk

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MTLLODGE, what keywords do surfers use to find lodgings in your area? Is there a more popular nearby town that you can hitch your wagon to, keyword wise?
Since you are just starting out and things are slow, it will pay to bite the bullet and get listed on more directories. BBONLINE is a must, and I don't see you as a member of the MO B&B Association either. Can you join the Hannibal CVB, or something similar closer by? A search of travel related sites for your area shows very few links to you...maybe you could approach some local businesses and offer to link to them if they will link to you...things that your guests would appreciate knowing about. Is there an Inn nearby similar to yours, with a similar demographic who does well? Do a link search to see who is linking to them, and use the information to decide where to pay for links.
I would also immediately make your Inn a Featured Inn here on Innspiring. Also, Follow this link for a large list of B&B directories where you can add your Inn for free...some are Michigan-specific, but most are not. It will only cost you your time and effort,,,while it may not bring much, even a couple of room nights (and the exposure) make it worth your while. Does your area have alot of vacation rentals? If so, it might pay to join VRBO or one of the other biggies that list them in your area. Depending on your bb.com listing, you may be able to join VRBO or HOMEAWAY for just $1 your first year.
In the beginning, the best way for people to find you is by paid links from the big sites. I started out as a member of everything and dropped the non-performers as we got more popular. And I spent DAYS combing the web for places where I could list my place, free or cheaply.
 
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