Case: The Accra Beach Hotel
The case is about the Accra Beach Hotel on the Caribbean island of Barbados. The hotel manager got a request from the West Indien Cricket Board (WICB) about hosting several cricket teams while the West Indien Cricket Servies, which is an important international sporting event. The head of the WICB was asking for a discount for 50 of the 141 rooms of the hotel. Now the sales manager has to decide whether to accept the inquiry or not. One important thing for her to consider is that business people, who are the most important guest group, would be stay away because of the cricket teams. On the other hand would hosting the teams have a publicity effect as the marketing exposure through the Board could be very beneficial for the hotel.
Factors that lead to variations in demand for rooms
Hotels like the Accra Beach Hotel, which are located in a holiday destination like Carribean islands, have both vacation guests and business guests. Variations in the demand of rooms by vacationers are caused by the different seasons for going into vacation. Hotels which are located in the Caribbean or other locations with hot periods while summer have lower occupancy rate while these periods but therefore have a higher occupancy rate while the winter month, when people try to escape the cold weather whereever they live. Business guests demand hotel rooms during the whole year but have a tendency to prefer the month before summer like may and june to do their business.
The Accra Beach Hotel on the islands of Barbados currently serves three different types of hotels guests. First the individual travelers who want to spend their vacations in a resort destination to relax and relieve stress from their daily life. Second the vacationers who travel with tour operators to have a scheduled vacations without the trouble of organizing. The number of guests from these two groups, which can be called the vacationers, is steadily decreasing. The third group of guests served by the Accra Beach Hotel are the business people and corporate customers who make business with local companies and come frequently for business meetings.
Pros and Cons for serving several segments
Having a different clientele is a major pro for hotels to achieve a high occupancy rate during the whole year. As there are special seasons for vacationers to go into vacations, especially to a Caribbean island, it is necessary for hotels to also serve other guests to make sure there are not too many empty rooms. Business people are a large opportunity for hotels to occupy rooms outside the vacation seasons and as the Accra Beach Hotel has the advantage to be near to both the airport and the capital city of Barbados it can utilizes these facts.
The biggest con for serving several unequal segments is that the different groups of guests might be annoyed by the other group of guests. As the text mentions there are vacationers who feel unconfortable with going to the beach and be surrounded by business people while their vacation.
This could be one of the reasons why number of vacationers is decreasing. But the hotel business faces a decreasing number of vacation guests all over the world, so on the one hand hotels need to vary their served segments, on the other hand they should focus on a group of guests to provide superior service in the choosen segment. Serving business people is a big opportunity for hotels because they are able to pay higher prices for rooms and are much more stable in their visiting frequency than vacationers.
Full members of the International Cricket Council:
Australia, England, South Africa, India, New Zealand, West Indies, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe and Bangladesh.
Associate members of the International Cricket Council:
Argentina, Belgium, Bermuda, Botswana, Canada, Cayman Islands, Denmark,...
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