The Roomex Blog

Introducing RoomexClean, our newest feature that informs users of individual hotel safety measures at a glance

Introducing RoomexClean, our newest feature that informs users of individual hotel safety measures at a glance

Roomex users will see a new icon in their accommodation results indicating that we have personally confirmed that the hotel they are booking meets or...

Read More

Best Western Hotels & Resorts launches new cleaning programme, Hotels that Care

Best Western is the most recent hotel chain to expand its cleaning protocols due to the impacts of COVID-19. 

Read More
Ensuring the safety and wellbeing of employees as they begin travelling again

Ensuring the safety and wellbeing of employees as they begin travelling again

No matter what industry you’re working in, where you’re living or where you’re going, you have one main concern. Safety. The Coronavirus pandemic has...

Read More

Dalata Hotel Group plc release new Keep Safe Programme

As countries, cities, and states begin to open up and governments ease restrictions, travel will begin to pick up but it may look different to before. ...

Read More
Roomex announces new strategic partnerships to give customers increased control and visibility of their hidden spend

Roomex announces new strategic partnerships to give customers increased control and visibility of their hidden spend

Workforce Travel Management company Roomex, has today announced three new partnership deals with Affiniture (part of Diners...

Read More
COVID-19 Updates From Roomex

COVID-19 Updates From Roomex

11 June 2020 Premier Inn launches CleanProtect, a new, enhanced hygiene promise To ensure both guest and employee safety, the Premier Inn has teamed up...

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7 ways expense fraud can occur in expense reports (and ways to stop it)

7 ways expense fraud can occur in expense reports (and ways to stop it)

Expense fraud is something you wish didn’t happen, but turning a blind eye to it could cost your business thousands. 

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Why travel safety will be an ever-present focus post COVID-19

Why travel safety will be an ever-present focus post COVID-19

The travel industry, like most industries, has undergone major changes due to the impacts of COVID-19. As a result of the pandemic, many of us have been...

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How Finance Teams Can Lead Their Company into Recovery Amid COVID-19

How Finance Teams Can Lead Their Company into Recovery Amid COVID-19

Since the start of March, the impacts of COVID-19 have hit nearly every industry. It’s safe to say we’re slowly adjusting to our new ‘normal’ - but the...

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How to manage travel post lockdown: from project bookings to long term stays

How to manage travel post lockdown: from project bookings to long term stays

COVID-19 has quickly impacted nearly every aspect of our lives. It’s taken a serious toll on our healthcare infrastructure, the economy, and of course,...

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Roomex users will see a new icon in their accommodation results indicating that we have personally confirmed that the hotel they are booking meets or exceeds the cleaning stands as recommended by the World Health Organisation.

Our customers will be able to click on the new icon and see a detailed report on what measures the hotel has implemented to ensure both guest and employee safety. 

Since the start of March, we’ve gone back to the drawing board and rewrote our product road map with one focus - customer safety. This pandemic has re-ranked what we value as important when travelling for work and your Roomex platform reflects that. 

As always, our customers are our ‘North Star’ guiding us on what to focus on creating and developing next. Our most recent update was a result of direct customer feedback. 

What’s on most of our customer’s minds as they consider returning to travel? 

Exactly ⅓ of all respondents to our recent survey agreed that their biggest concern was hotel cleanliness, followed by 20% stating that hotel facilities were their biggest worry.  The majority of workforce travellers stated they have no concerns in travelling again, with 54% of people responding with an answer of 7 or above on a scale of 1-10. 

For those key workers that had been travelling throughout the pandemic, they shared their biggest concerns.  The most common concerns were fears over the rooms not being cleaned adequately, no use of restaurants, and general hotel availability being sparse. 

RoomexClean will give travellers and bookers peace of mind and ensure safe and clean accommodation 

We want to make you feel safe as you get back on the road. We understand your fears, hesitations, and concerns. Which is why we directly responded to your biggest concerns with RoomexClean. 

Login to your platform to check out RoomexClean

All properties on our platform are following the cleaning standards as recommended by the WHO, and many have committed to going above and beyond these standards to ensure both guest and employee safety. Our new safety icon is displayed when we’ve talked individually with that chain to confirm their hygiene measures and their updated food and beverage offerings.

RoomexClean-1

All users have to do is click on the icon 'Food & Hygiene' (pictured) and information on the hotel, their promised cleanliness measures, and what should be expected at check-in will be displayed. 

Here are some of the hotels that have already been added to RoomexClean (with new ones being added daily!) 

  • GLH Hotels
  • Premier Inn
  • Travelodge
  • Best Western
  • Atlas Hotels (Holiday Inn Express)
  • Dalata (Clayton Hotels, Maldron Hotels)
  • Leonardo Hotels (Jurys Inn)
  • Hilton Hotels
  • Marriot Hotels 
  • IFG Hotels
  • Lindner Hotels
  • Penta Hotels
  • Roomzzz Aparthotels
  • Staycity Aparthotels 
  • Accor
  • B&B Hotels
  • Club Quarters
  • Galway Bay Hotel 
  • Kew Green

What are these hotels doing to keep you safe? Well, here’s a summary: 

Hotels have stepped up to ensure both guest peace of mind and safety. Our participating hotels have committed to some or more of the below to increase safety:

  • Daily deep cleans in public, heavily trafficked areas
  • Sanitised key cards 
  • Adding protective mats and screens at reception
  • Meal services offered as room service or takeaway in disposable, single use containers
  • Leaving rooms empty between guests for 72 hours
  • Running training for all staff members to educate them on best safety practices
  • For long term stays - offering cleaning bundles to guest
  • Removing unnecessary room elements like bed scarves, menus, and note pads
  • Going completely cashless or contact free at check in 
  • In- room text services to minimise visits to reception and use of phone 

Interested in learning more about the RoomexClean feature? Get in touch with your account manager, or reach out to one of our travel experts today.

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Thank you for submitting your email, one of our workforce travel experts will be in touch with you within one working day.

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Introducing RoomexClean, our newest feature that informs users of individual hotel safety measures at a glance

Introducing RoomexClean, our newest feature that informs users of individual hotel safety measures at a glance

Roomex users will see a new icon in their accommodation results indicating that we have personally confirmed that the hotel they are booking meets or...

Read More
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Best Western is the most recent hotel chain to expand its cleaning protocols due to the impacts of COVID-19. 

Best Western is one of our largest hotel partners - and a partner on our Key Worker Support package. With over 4,700 hotels in over 100 countries worldwide - the chain has always been a leader in cleanliness, launching their 'I Care Clean' programme in 2012. For nearly 75 years they have maintained a positive reputation for providing guests with clean, well-maintained accommodations. 

As part of their ongoing commitment to keep guests safe and healthy during these uncertain times they've launched a new cleaning programme called Hotels That Care based upon guidance provided by the WHO, the Center for Disease Control, and other government agencies. 

Find Best Western in Roomex with our new 'RoomexClean' tag, indicating that it's exceeded the cleaning standards as recommended by the Word Health Organization. Read more about our RoomexClean feature here

new best western pic

The Hotels That Care programme addresses five main areas in their hotels:

1. Front desk and lobby

  • The use of Best Western's Mobile Concierge Platform will be in use to minimise guest contact with a streamlined check in and check out procedures
  • Social distancing measures implemented 
  • Lobby brochures, magazines, and papers removed
  • Enhanced sanitisation procures and deep cleaning in heavily trafficked areas like the front desk and the lobby 
  • Sanitising wipes and stations will be available throughout the hotel 

2. Guest rooms and housekeeping

  • Enhanced cleaning protocols have been implemented
  • If possible guest rooms will not be entered for 24-72 hours after check out
  • All touch points (faucets, door handles, light switches, thermostats, clocks, hangers) will be cleaned and sanitised
  • Unnecessary items like decorative pillows and bed scarves, pens and paper are removed
  • For safety of guests and staff, housekeeping service will be only available on request

3. Food and beverage updates

  • Offerings have been adapted for guest and staff health and safety 
  • Breakfast rooms will be closed depending on location to avoid unnessary guest congregation
  • Enhanced Grab and Go options are being offered in most hotels 

4. Public amenities

  • When allowed to open, public amenities like fitness centres, swimming pools, and meeting rooms will be cleaned on closely monitored schedules with disinfect chemicals 
  • Each evening, these areas will be sanitised with the use of electrostatic fogging, ozone generators, or ultraviolet devices

5. Hotel employee and staff requirements

  • Hotel employees will follow strict guidelines - including wearing PPE, frequent and stringent hand washing protocols
  • Employee workstations will be cleaned and disinfected after every shift
  • Employees will be empowered to stay home if unwell, and communicate on potential exposure to COVID-19, and will be fully educated on how to maintain safe and clean home 

See what Best Western is doing to ensure guest and staff safety in this short video. 

Learn more about Best Western and RoomexClean by reaching out to our hotel experts or your account manager. 

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Best Western Hotels & Resorts launches new cleaning programme, Hotels that Care

Best Western is the most recent hotel chain to expand its cleaning protocols due to the impacts of COVID-19. 

Read More
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No matter what industry you’re working in, where you’re living or where you’re going, you have one main concern. Safety. The Coronavirus pandemic has permeated into nearly every aspect of our lives over the last few months, and will likely for the year to come.

As many parts of society slowly open up, travel will be required, be it by plane, train, or car. If you’re a travel manager, a procurement director, or anyone that looks after travel - suddenly you require more control and take further responsibility for everyone’s safety. 

Whether you call it Duty of Care, Safety and Wellbeing, or Employee Care - here at Roomex we want you to know we’re here to support you and your teams as they hit the road. 

Employee safety and wellbeing has always been at the heart of business travel. COVID-19 has increased the need for a detailed and well-thought duty of care to employees. One aspect of this is knowing where all employees have travelled in the past, and exactly where they are should something happen.

Some companies book workforce travel with multiple bookers through various leisure sites, making it difficult to maintain a procedure to keep track of all past, present and future trips. It’s recommended to use a centralised system to book workforce and business travel, especially for the duty of care aspect, so its fast and easy to look up reservations and locations. 

We’ve updated our live Duty of Care map so it’s easier to keep track of where employees have been, their contact details, and where they are booked in next should an outbreak arise.

The second a booking is made in Roomex, it’s immediately viewable in Roomex Analytics where reservations go directly into our live Duty of Care map. Here, users are able to view all trips, past, present and future and get in touch with any employee.

june duty of care

Our account management and support teams are trained on the best practices for travelling during these uncertain times - and are ready and willing to assist you. 

We will help manage every aspect of your trip, including sourcing, negotiating, facilitating group bookings that best suit your needs. Our team is available on live chat to answer any questions about new hygiene policies from hotels and are available for free travel policy consultations. Most importantly, they will call and confirm check-ins on your behalf and recommend safety measures and any updates to meal services. 

Speaking of meal options - are hotels still serving food?

Yes and no. Most hotels have amended their usual dining services to grab and go boxes or room service with disposable packaging. To learn more about what individual chains are doing to keep up food services and to maintain cleaning safety standards, check out this article. 

Finally - look out for our safety icon in your Roomex platform that confirms the hotel has gone above and beyond the cleaning standards recommended by the WHO.

covidcleanroomex

We update these tags weekly and talk directly with the hotel providers to ensure reliable information. 

Reach out to your account manager for direct queries regarding upcoming stays in any hotel booked through Roomex. 

 

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Ensuring the safety and wellbeing of employees as they begin travelling again

Ensuring the safety and wellbeing of employees as they begin travelling again

No matter what industry you’re working in, where you’re living or where you’re going, you have one main concern. Safety. The Coronavirus pandemic has...

Read More
{post_body={body={html=

As countries, cities, and states begin to open up and governments ease restrictions, travel will begin to pick up but it may look different to before. Hotel chains large and small are stepping up to create a safer environment for those traveling during and after the pandemic. Most have gone above and beyond to give travellers peace of mind. 

We spoke to Sarah Conway, Regional Sales & Marketing Manager for Dalata Hotel Group plc about the measures that they have put in place. Dalata Hotel Group is the largest hotel operator in Ireland, with a growing presence in the United Kingdom. The Group manages the Clayton Hotels, Maldron Hotels and Partner brands. The Group's portfolio now consists of 30 owned hotels, 11 leased hotels and three management contracts with a total of 9,208 bedrooms. In addition to this, Dalata is currently developing 11 new hotels. This will bring the total number of bedrooms in Dalata to over 12,000.

Hygiene and preventing the spread of COVID-19 have become so important. How are you ensuring both staff and guest safety?

Over the past few months, we have developed the Dalata Keep Safe Programme, which has involved the introduction of a wide range of protocols and systems that will ensure as much as possible our guests will have an enjoyable and safe visit to all our hotels. We have been testing these protocols and systems in our hotels with great success.

There are numerous initiatives we are undertaking to ensure as much as possible the safety and health of all our guests, employees and suppliers. Like for example, providing plenty of hand sanitizers around each hotel, providing nose and mouth masks to employees and clearly marking public areas to ensure social distancing. Above all, we want our guests, whether they are on business or leisure to have a relaxed enjoyable stay with us.

How are Dalata ensuring safe and clean rooms for guests?

Cleaning is extremely important, but it is not enough. We have introduced thorough systems of sanitisation to ensure, as much as possible, that these areas are safe. Our guests will then have the option of using the lift or staircase to access their bedroom. Strict protocols on lift usage will be displayed on each floor. As guests arrive at their bedroom door, it will have a seal that will break on entering. After each room is cleaned thoroughly and key touchpoints are sanitised, we will fog the room with a special device that deals very effectively with viruses and other air and surface contaminants. This device is used in “Clean Room Technology” throughout the pharmaceutical sector and in some hospitals. Guests will know their room has been treated by the unbroken seal on your door. 

The contents of guestrooms have also been reviewed to remove non-essential, tactile items, such as pen, paper and bed cushions.

Has your check-in process changed to avoid contact?

Before our guests arrive at our hotels, they will have the option of checking in online, so all they have to do is collect their bedroom key from our screened reception desk. Of course, they will have the option of checking in the usual way, should they choose to do so. Online check-out will also be an option. Guests will walk through our spacious public areas that will be thoroughly cleaned continuously throughout each day.

We will also be introducing new state-of-the art technology and additional contactless payment options to make the whole experience seamless.

Have your staff undergone training?

Yes, staff throughout each hotel will complete a dedicated training programme to ensure full implementation of each new measure and will follow the public health official advice and guidelines at all times. 

What is the business doing to stay up to date with updated recommendations from the government and the World Health Organization? 

All of our new health and safety protocols will be accredited by Bureau Veritas, a world leader in testing inspection and certification in the Health and Safety area. So, we are doing everything possible to protect the Health and Safety of all our guests, employees, and suppliers.

(“Bureau Veritas is a company specialized in testing, inspection, and certification, founded in 1828. It is headquartered in Paris and is present in 140 countries through a network of over 1,500 offices and laboratories, and more than 78,000 employees.” https://group.bureauveritas.com)

Will you still be offering food? 

We will have a range of food and beverage options with in-room and main restaurant dining options available. This will include restaurants with table service for all meals (no self-service queuing). Again, there will be protocols in place that will be explained by our team in our public areas. The protocols that apply to guests will equally apply to all our employees both front and back of house. Our employee safety and health is as important as our guest safety.

Learn more about Dalata Hotel Group plc and what they are doing to ensure guest safety here. 

Roomex is assisting companies with their project needs worldwide, whether it is supporting key workers with their long term stays in hotels or apartments, please reach out to us and see how we can help you.

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Dalata Hotel Group plc release new Keep Safe Programme

As countries, cities, and states begin to open up and governments ease restrictions, travel will begin to pick up but it may look different to before. ...

Read More
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Workforce Travel Management company Roomex, has today announced three new partnership deals with Affiniture (part of Diners International), AirPlus International and EML payments, in a further step toward simplifying travel spend and eliminating expense management for companies. 

Roomex’s ambition is to provide a market leading range of payment and credit solutions to support all of our customers travel spending needs - including credit cards, debit cards, virtual credit cards, single invoice billing and the most favourable credit terms in the market. Partnership with these leading financial institutions is another step closer to achieving this goal.   

As companies ramp up their business activity post-lockdown, access to the best payment and credit products is vital. 

Roomex recently launched their spend management product, RoomexPay, comprising of an app and pre-paid expense card, opening all the benefits of MasterCard, the world's fastest payments network, to their customers. 

Roomex CEO, Garry Moroney commented “Our customers are telling us that payment, control and visibility of travel spend is a major pain point, these partnerships enable Roomex to deliver our market leading and best in class travel management solution” 

Learn more about Roomex by getting in touch with a member of their team here. 

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Roomex announces new strategic partnerships to give customers increased control and visibility of their hidden spend

Roomex announces new strategic partnerships to give customers increased control and visibility of their hidden spend

Workforce Travel Management company Roomex, has today announced three new partnership deals with Affiniture (part of Diners...

Read More
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Thank you for submitting your email, one of our workforce travel experts will be in touch with you within one working day.

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11 June 2020

Premier Inn launches CleanProtect, a new, enhanced hygiene promise

To ensure both guest and employee safety, the Premier Inn has teamed up with Diversey, a global leading cleaning and product supplier for the healthcare and hospitality industries to implement a rigorous daily cleaning regime across all their 800 properties in the U.K. and Ireland. All customer support staff at Roomex have been trained on these updates, and are free to chat through these initiatives with you. 

This programme that Premier Inn has implemented includes: 

  • Social distancing measures like Prespex screens and minimising contact at reception in place.
  • More frequent cleaning of high touch areas, and special attention to controls such as air conditioning and TV remotes in rooms.
  • Since they employ every member of their 9,000 housekeeping team directly, they are able to have better control of the standards. Management will be preforming additional room checks.
  • Linen will be laundered at over 60 degrees with disinfectant detergent and shower curtains will be replaced after every guest.
  • All team members have been provided face masks, gloves, aprons and hand sanitiser.

Read the full announcement here. 

27 May 2020

Hotels increase cleaning measures to ensure safe stays for guests 

Hotel chains large and small are stepping up to create a safer environment for those traveling during the pandemic. All hotels in our platform are abiding by the cleaning guidelines recommended by The WHO. Most have gone above and beyond to give travellers a piece of mind. 

  • Atlas Hotels (Holiday Inn Express) deep clean hotels daily and sanitize public areas every hour. They've implemented new social distancing screens and mats to ensure guest and staff safety. Learn more about the measures they have taken here
  • Penta Hotels have been carefully following safety guidelines as outlined by the WHO and have increased cleaning in common and guest areas. They've run training's for staff on how to protect against transmission, and have implemented procedures in case there is a suspected or confirmed case in one of their properties. 
  • Staycity Aparthotels are cleaning public areas multiple times each day and deep cleaning rooms and public areas. An interesting safety note was that they are leaving rooms empty for 72 hours between guests, then deep cleaning the rooms. For long stay guests, where the normal in-stay cleaning service is not available, they are offering a cleaning pack and room refills as often as required. Learn more about their detailed cleaning strategy here
  • Best Western has required all hotels to install protective barriers at reception and will clean the desk after each guest. They have provided a in-room text service to minimise visits to reception and the use of the phone. All key cards will be sanitized prior to check in, and will be handed to guests safely. They are disinfecting busy areas regularly throughout the day and deep cleaning rooms. They have removed unnecessary room elements, like bed scarves and  note pads and pencils. If possible, rooms will be left vacant for at least 24 hours in between guests- and over 72 hours if the guest was unwell. The cleaning team has been trained on a detailed and comprehensive new checklist to keep themselves and guests safe. 
  • Leonardo Hotels (Jurys Inn) have gone completely cashless and has added protective screens at reception. They've implemented deep cleaning protocols, frequently clean heavy trafficked areas, increased bedroom checks by senior management, and reduced printed materials in the rooms. Their staff has also taken part in trainings to ensure their safety and the safety of guests. Learn more about what they are doing to keep guests safe here
  • Roomzzz Aparthotels has created contact free check ins and conducted specialised training for all employees to increase staff knowledge on infection control and sanitation. They too have increased sanitation and cleaning, wiping down heavy trafficked areas multiple times a day and deep cleaning rooms. Learn more about the measures they have taken here
  • IHG Hotels now include visible verification of sanitized items (e.g. glassware, remote control) and reduced room furnishings. They've also implemented touchless transactions, sanitized key cards and promise deep cleaning on high touch surfaces displayed with 'last cleaned' charts. There is hand sanitizer, disinfectant, and wipes available in guest rooms. They are working with external specialist from the Cleveland Clinic to ensure best practices and define even better solutions for cleaning and safety during this time. 
  • Lindner Hotels have installed protective screens at check in and sanitize hotel keys prior to guest arrival. All staff is required to wear masks. All documentation in hotel rooms such as menus and TV programmes will be replaced between guests. All room service ordered will be delivered in single use containers. To increase their social distancing, they've asked guests to select an accurate check in time to avoid crowds at reception. Cash payments are no longer excepted. 

Reach out to your account manager for direct queries regarding upcoming stays in any hotel booked through Roomex. We will update this list regularly, so check back to find more information about cleanliness measures in hotels. 

28 April 2020

Roomex Key Worker Support Package sees increase in Hotel Partners

Since its launch, our Key Worker Support Package has helped provide relief and accommodation to thousands of key workers traveling during the pandemic. Every day we're adding new hotel partners to the initiative, and as of today we have secured 245 Key Worker rates across hotels in the U.K. and Ireland. 

Learn more about our Key Worker Support package here, or get in touch with our team here to get started. 

16 April 2020

Hotels now offering boxed and takeaway meals 

Hotels around the U.K. and Ireland have adapted to serve Key Workers better with grab and go breakfasts and room service dinners. Travelodge is now opening a breakfast box option available 24 hours a day at all open hotels including a muffin, cereal, a musili bar, and juice. 

Note that all Travelodge Key Worker hotels are bookable through Roomex right now, and all the other properties are open for future bookings for stays after 8 May, subject to change if travel restrictions are extended.

Remember that Roomex contacts every traveller and hotel prior to stay to ensure the traveler knows what to expect upon arrival. 

31 March 2020

Roomex launches a Key Worker Support Package, offering a customised hotel programme tailored by a dedicated account manager, special hotel rates, and new, free in-trip expense card (RoomexPay)

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to spread, we rely on key workers to keep the country running. These heroes are caring for our families in hospitals, keeping the lights on in our homes, keeping our environments clean and keeping our shops stocked and operational.

At Roomex, we believe that the risks that these individuals are taking to keep us all safe are worth more than a simple thank you. We are honoured to work with those supporting our country in these trying times - and it’s our turn to support them.

Roomex is working with businesses, non-profits, and governments in some of the most affected areas to ensure that we reach COVID-19 responders who need accommodation away from home.

  • We have negotiated exclusive Key Worker Rates across the country that are available on your Roomex platform. Please ask us for the full list of hotels
  • We will work with you to provide a customised hotel programme based on your unique needs 
  • We are dedicating account managers to our customers that have Key Workers to ensure safety and peace of mind
  • As safety during this time is the most important, we ensure that all hotels that are offering this discount are cleaned to the standards recommended by the WHO 
  • Our team will assist you in drafting the required letter stating permission to travel that is required upon check-in at all hotels
  • We realise hotel expenses are only part of the overall requirement for you right now- so we are also offering RoomexPay free of charge as part of this Key Worker Rate package

If you're looking for support during this time, get in touch with our team at tryus@roomex.com 

Read More

30 March 2020
Travelodge to close hotels until 30 April 2020

Abiding by the new instructions by the U.K. government, Travelodge will temporarily close its hotels. However, some locations will remain open for critical and key workers. See the full statement here

25 March 2020

Premier Inn to close hotels until 30 April 2020

We have just received an update from Premier Inn that they have removed all of their hotels from sale up until 30th April 2020 in response to the government request to close all hotels.

For bookings on stays from 24th March - 31st May 2020

In order to comply with the latest Government guidelines if you have a stay in this period, please request a cancellation in your Roomex Platform. See below

For bookings on stays from 15th April - 31st May 2020

Based on the latest Government advice there is the opportunity to cancel bookings to obtain a full refund in your Roomex platform. The booking must be cancelled by 23.59 the day prior to arrival. See below

Alternatively, you can request to amend your booking. Please click on the ‘I want to amend this booking’ button to make your request to change dates.

How to cancel or amend a booking:

  • If you need to cancel a refundable booking, please log into Roomex, and click 'Bookings' at the top of your platform. To cancel a booking, click the three dots in the 'Action' column, and select 'Cancel'. Alternatively, cancel with the link on your voucher confirmation which is found just under the Terms and Conditions.  
  • If you need to cancel a non-refundable rate please log into Roomex, and click 'Bookings' at the top of your platform. To cancel a booking, click the three dots in the 'Action' column, and select 'Cancel'. Alternatively, cancel with the link on your voucher confirmation which is found just under the Terms and Conditions. A member of our Customer Success team will confirm your request ASAP. The booking must be cancelled the day prior to arrival.
  • If you want to amend a refundable booking please click on the ‘I want to amend this booking’ button to make your request
  • Please note that all refundable terms are set directly by the accommodation provider, Roomex cannot facilitate a refund on non-refundable reservations.

Please be advised that our Priority Support team is experiencing an unprecedented volume of queries and are working as best they can to get to every query as soon as possible.

Login to your platform 

23 March 2020

Travelodge to close restaurants 

Travelodge has announced also to close their restaurants this morning effective retrospectively from 20 March.

'In line with the government instruction and our commitment to the health and safety of all our customers and hotel team members, we’ve had to temporarily close our restaurants and bars at 22:00 Friday 20th March until further notice.'

20 March 2020

To ensure the fastest support:

To ensure the fastest response from our support team, if you're looking to change the date or cancel a booking please add the RX Number and the departure date in the email subject line with the words Date change or Cancellation. For example,



RX982130 - 23/3/20 - Date change 

Premier Inn to close restaurants

In response to government advice regarding social distancing, The Premier Inn has made the difficult decision to close all of their restaurants with effect from 21st March 2020 until further notice. However, their hotels currently remain open so your booking will not be affected and we will adjust the booking value accordingly.

19 March 2020

For all business travel during this time, please be advised to call the hotel in advance to ensure the hotel is fully operational. We are also in close contact with all of our suppliers and will continue to keep you updated.

18 March 2020

Over the last few weeks, both businesses and governments have come together to protect their employees and residents as the Coronavirus situation advances. Our hearts go out to all of our customers and their families that have been impacted by this virus - we’re all in this together.

For those that are still travelling, these times can be filled with uncertainty and fear. Like you - we’re constantly monitoring the situation and working with our customers to ensure that those who are travelling are safe. We’re here for you - no matter where you are, and no matter where this situation brings us. 

We will be continuously updating this page as a source of information on the current COVID-19 outbreak. Whether you need it now or later, it could be worth bookmarking. 

General Advice

As this situation develops on an hourly basis - it can be difficult to keep up. We are following the recommendations and guidance from the World Health Organization, (WHO) as well as the local governments of countries that customers are booking in. 

Useful links:

Travel FAQ’s

How to stay safe while travelling:

According to the WHO, hand washing (with soap and water or an alcohol-based gel) and social distancing are the keys to stopping the spread of Coronavirus. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth - and stay at least a metre away from others. When staying in hotels, keep the air conditioning to a minimum.

We also recommend calling hotels in advance of check-in to ensure the hotel is fully operational. 

What are hotels doing to keep guests safe? 

Hotels, of course, are playing their part - and a large number of our accommodation providers are following these steps:

  • Along with our usual cleaning protocols, Hotels are carrying out regular deep cleaning.
  • Providing hand sanitizers.
  • Holding thorough briefings with their customer-facing teams to ensure they are informed, ready for unfolding scenarios and taking preventative measure to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Roomex Platform FAQ’s 

Support Queries and Longer Wait Times 

Our Priority Support team is experiencing an increase in the volume of queries. They are working as best they can to get to every query as soon as possible. Please note that our accommodation providers and suppliers are also experiencing a larger volume of queries, impacting the time it takes us to best serve you.

The response time is naturally slower, but we want to assure you that we have increased the number of staff in Support to manage these queries and we will get back to you as soon as possible. 

If your trip is not within the next 7 days, please hold off contacting customer service so we can help those travelling immediately. We will get back to you as soon as possible after weighing the urgency. 

To ensure the fastest response from our support team, if you're looking to change the date or cancel a booking please add the RX Number and the departure date in the email subject line with the words Date change or Cancellation. For example,

RX982130 - 23/3/20 - Date change 

Amending Bookings

If you are making a booking or changing the date of your reservation we recommend booking a refundable rate. 

  • If you need to cancel a refundable booking, please log into Roomex, and click 'Bookings' at the top of your platform. To cancel a booking, click the three dots in the 'Action' column, and select 'Cancel'. Alternatively, cancel with the link on your voucher confirmation which is found just under the Terms and Conditions.  
  • If you want to amend a refundable booking please rebook with the new details on your platform, then cancel the original booking free of charge. 
  • Please note that all refundable terms are set directly by the accommodation provider, Roomex cannot facilitate a refund on non-refundable reservations.

Hotel updates 

Premiere Inn to close restaurants from 21 March

In response to government advice regarding social distancing, The Premier Inn has made the difficult decision to close all of their restaurants with effect from 21st March 2020 until further notice. However, their hotels currently remain open so your booking will not be affected and we will adjust the booking value accordingly.

Best practices 

Focus on Duty of Care 

If an employee has a problem while travelling, a lot of factors quickly come into play - from medical costs to repatriation. The first thing you’ll need to know is exactly where they are. Remember, in Roomex Analytics, you can quickly see where every employee is with our Duty of Care feature. You’ll find their contacts, location, and hotel, as well as any historical stays. Act fast, and stay calm - and know our customer care teams are also at the other end of the phone should you need us. 

Login to your platform and view you live Duty of Care map 

Remain flexible in the coming weeks

During these times more than ever, it’s important to read the terms and conditions of your bookings both on Roomex and on any other site that you use to book air and train travel. Sometimes the fine print can leave you without a refund or an alternative flight or train. As we’ve mentioned earlier this month, we’ve recently released hundreds of exclusive Roomex Rates into your platform. These rates are refundable and extremely flexible, with late check-ins and last-minute cancellations. Learn more about these exclusive Roomex Rates here

Based on our tracking, we’ve seen the price of hotels dropping at the moment, so if you are willing to take the risk, you could also focus on organising trips later in the year. Also, always check your Roomex platform if the room your booking is refundable if you’re unsure the project will proceed. 

Get in touch with our support team at:

  1. In your platform - by clicking on the blue chat icon on bottom left of the screen
  2. Email: priority@roomex.com  
  3. U.K.: +44 20 7183 7737
  4. Ireland: +353 1 2966275
  5. Germany: 0800-0003899
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COVID-19 Updates From Roomex

COVID-19 Updates From Roomex

11 June 2020 Premier Inn launches CleanProtect, a new, enhanced hygiene promise To ensure both guest and employee safety, the Premier Inn has teamed up...

Read More
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Expense fraud is something you wish didn’t happen, but turning a blind eye to it could cost your business thousands. 

Expense-fraud

Before moving any further, let’s let the numbers speak for themselves, sourced from the 2020 annual report by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE), and their 2019 Benchmarking Report.

  1. Theft by employees costs companies around 5% of their annual revenues or $4.5 trillion on a global level.
  2. There are many ways employees commit fraud against their employers, however, 55% of all crimes cited were of employees creating fraudulent physical documents. This is possible and most common when companies have outdated expense reporting methods.
  3. A lack of internal controls contributed to nearly ⅓ of all fraud 
  4. 60% of organisations expect to increase their investments in anti-fraud programmes over the next 2 years

Since we’re all on the same page that fraud is real and happens all around us, let’s figure out some reasons how it happens, and how it can be stopped

We’re focusing here on fraud in expense reports, as they are the most common type of fraud related to workforce travel. 

  • 1. Vague travel and expense policies
    You shouldn’t underestimate the importance of creating strong travel and expense policies. Most big companies have strong, detailed travel policies in place but even they forget to add information on alcohol, car washes, GPS, train ticket upgrades, or hotel laundry. The clearer you are in drafting these policies, the more difficult it will be for employees to cheat on their expense reports. Download our Expense policy template to get started. 
  • 2. Employees not feeling valued and ‘pay themselves back’
    Lots of employees feel burnt out, unrecognised and unfulfilled. This is due to many things, from poor compensation to micromanagement to constant travelling. Whatever it may be, they pay themselves back with small expense report deceptions. So, value and prioritise your team! 
  • 4. An oppressive travel policy
    I know we just mentioned the problem with vague expense policies- however, if you go draconian on your employees it can create an ‘us vs. them’ culture in your company, and will hurt your bottom line when employees cheat on future reports to ‘get back’. Aim for the sweet spot here where the policy is clear, but exceeding policy, especially when it’s necessary, think the cost of travelling to London vs Birmingham, will not garner punishment.
  • 5. Employees learned from their boss, who learned from their boss...and so on
    Just as kids copy the behaviour of their parents, employees will mimic the behaviour of their superiors. If your top execs are splashing out on fancy dinners and drinks, chances are at least a few employees will follow suit. 
  • 6. Human error
    Everyone makes mistakes. Sometimes even the most attention oriented travel managers book a room out of policy, or an employee submits the same receipt twice. These mistakes are tough to spot in a traditional expense management system, but easy in modern ones like RoomexPay.
  • 7. Managers make mistakes too
    Managers are not accountants, and shouldn’t be. Once the employee organises their receipts and records it in the companies excel sheet, they send it on to their boss to approve. The manager typically will approve or misread some sections, maybe skipping over fraudulent claims, because again, they are not an accountant! Take them out of the equation and reduce fraud. 

And… there’s likely more. Clearly fraud doesn’t present itself in obvious ways and can be extremely time consuming and difficult for even the sharpest accountants to catch. Between the complications of detecting fraud and the lack of real-time data that traditional expense management practices provide, it’s inevitable that expense report fraud is occurring. But, it can be stopped. 

Download our 'Guide to using expense management to unlock company-wide savings' to find out how one small change to your expense management process can work to deter fraudulent behaviors. 

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Thank you for submitting your email, one of our workforce travel experts will be in touch with you within one working day.

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7 ways expense fraud can occur in expense reports (and ways to stop it)

7 ways expense fraud can occur in expense reports (and ways to stop it)

Expense fraud is something you wish didn’t happen, but turning a blind eye to it could cost your business thousands. 

Read More
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Thank you for submitting your email, one of our workforce travel experts will be in touch with you within one working day.

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The travel industry, like most industries, has undergone major changes due to the impacts of COVID-19. As a result of the pandemic, many of us have been working from home to halt the spread of the virus. As countries, cities, and states begin to open up and governments ease restrictions, travel will begin to pick up, first domestically and then internationally. That’s not to say that travel will be the same as it was in 2019. Business and leisure travellers will have new worries, concerns and requests - all with the goal of keeping safe. 

Staying safe will be the main concern for workforce travellers post COVID-19, but what exactly will the new normal look like? 

1. New preferences for rooms 

Before the pandemic, many workforce travellers didn’t have much preference for the type of room they were booked into. In industries like construction, many didn’t mind sharing a hotel room with a colleague. Now, travellers are looking for more space. We’ve been seeing an increase in bookings on our platform for serviced apartments and aparthotels, particularly in the U.K. and in Germany. Guests have more space and have the ability to eat or cook in the room rather than dining out. Serviced apartments typically include a fully stocked kitchen, maid service or package, and sometimes even room service. 

2. Increased communication about cleaning measures on planes and in hotels 

We’re all nervous to begin travelling again, whether for leisure or business. But, hotels and travel platforms are putting in place many new operational changes to keep guests safe. We’ve talked to dozens of hotels and serviced apartments over the last few months who’ve shared detailed plans on new hygiene measures. Some are leaving rooms vacant for 72 hours between guests, all have increased cleaning standards in rooms and common areas, and many are providing comprehensive training to all staff to ensure compliance.

As a business traveller, you should expect information on the cleanliness of the hotel or apartment prior to arrival, and ensure they are complying with the guidelines recommended by the WHO. All properties listed on Roomex are certified clean and highlighted within the platform. Our travel experts are also contacting hotels on behalf of customers to ensure the hotel is abiding by stringent cleaning measures and is fully operational. 

3. Contactless payments 

The move to contactless payment has been gathering pace in recent times and has been sped up even further by COVID-19. Travelling with cash is going the way of ordering goods using a fax machine, and many companies are taking note. In our personal lives, we’ve become used to ‘tapping to pay’ with our mobile phones or credit cards - but in workforce travel, there are often many hoops to jump through and a lag in repayment. Not to mention, many merchants are no longer accepting cash due to the impacts of the pandemic, and requesting customers use a contactless payment method.

RoomexPay suite (1)

In reaction to these changes, Roomex has recently developed a solution for workforce travellers used to paying with cash and often out of pocket, RoomexPay. It’s a smart, end to end workforce spend management solution. Its prepaid card eliminates expense management and gives users full visibility and control of all in-trip spend. Many companies are uncomfortable providing travellers with corporate credit cards due to risks associated with them, and now with the decrease in acceptance of cash, RoomexPay will be the solution. Companies have full, remote control of how much money each card user has access to, and have a live, real-time view of every transaction, and can turn off any card within seconds through the app.

Learn more about the benefits of switching from cash to a prepaid credit card and eliminating the expense claim process with RoomexPay here. 

4. Flexible, refundable rates 

Travellers and travel managers are looking to book fully refundable rates for the foreseeable future. We’re unsure what the rest of the year will bring, and where the next ‘hotspot’ could be or if a project could be cancelled last minute. To reduce the stress and risk of financial loss, most hotels and serviced apartments are offering fully refundable and flexible rates. Our travel experts also recommend booking only flexible rates for the time being, until there is more stability. We’ve added an extra filter in Roomex to only display refundable rates, so they appear at the top of every search. 

5. Enhanced Duty of Care 

Duty of Care has always been a central part of business travel. The pandemic has increased the need for a detailed and well-thought duty of care to employees. One aspect of Duty of Care is knowing where all employees have travelled in the past, and exactly where they are should something happen.

A lot of companies still book workforce travel with multiple bookers through various leisure sites, making it difficult to maintain a procedure to keep track of all past, present and future trips. It’s recommended to use a centralised system to book workforce and business travel, especially for the duty of care aspect, so its fast and easy to look up reservations and locations. The second a booking is made in Roomex, it’s immediately viewable in Roomex Analytics where the user can view savings, compliance, city, booker, traveller, and more. On top of this, reservations also go directly into our live Duty of Care map. Here, users are able to view all trips, past, present and future and get in touch with any employee.

june duty of care

Get in touch with our hotel experts to learn more about updates we’ve made to this feature in reaction to the pandemic, and how it will benefit your duty of care policy. 

6. Tighter travel policies 

Many businesses have faced budget cuts due to the impacts of COVID-19, resulting in less flexibility in room night prices. Travel policies, more than ever are relevant for keeping travel budgets in check. The majority of CFO’s and finance teams don’t place controls around business travel- yet it can account for up to 10% of their total operating expenditure. By implementing a travel policy by city, team, or reason for travel, you’re able to gain visibility and get control of this unmanaged spend.

Roomex is personalised to each company, so travel policies are displayed right in the search results when looking for a hotel. The benefit to adding travel policies directly into your hotel booking platform is that bookers immediately know if the hotel they are looking at is in policy, and travel managers or finance teams can see at a glance who is booking most often out of policy and where. This detailed report shows how much your travel policies match reality. Because many companies are either updating their travel policies or creating them for the first time, we’re offering free travel policy consultation to advise you to create a company-wide travel policy for your staff. Get in touch our team here

Everyone is wondering what business travel will look like in a post-COVID-19 world, and doing their best to plan and provide employees with the information they need to stay safe while saving the business time and money. Whether that means providing a stronger duty of care, a tighter travel policy, rolling out a new expense platform, or booking more serviced apartments - business travellers will be safer than ever going forward.

Learn more about the services Roomex is offering to get businesses like yours back on the road by getting in touch with one of our travel experts today.

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Why travel safety will be an ever-present focus post COVID-19

Why travel safety will be an ever-present focus post COVID-19

The travel industry, like most industries, has undergone major changes due to the impacts of COVID-19. As a result of the pandemic, many of us have been...

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Thank you for submitting your email, one of our workforce travel experts will be in touch with you within one working day.

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Since the start of March, the impacts of COVID-19 have hit nearly every industry. It’s safe to say we’re slowly adjusting to our new ‘normal’ - but the ripple effects of this storm are only just beginning. Finance departments have jumped into the helm to guide businesses to be more conservative, remain positive, and plan for the future, whatever it may look like.

As the CFO of Roomex, the leading platform for managing workforce travel spend, I wanted to share some learnings that have come out of managing the changes that the pandemic brought to our company, and how finance departments can lead their companies through these challenging times.

We're all facing similar challenges. 

The world is changing dramatically and in ways that are hard to predict. Finance departments are overwhelmed with both the volume of work they have and managing the stress of falling revenues. The general level of risk is also heightened during these times, with most CFO’s looking to create plans with fewer people, budget cuts, and economic uncertainty.

But, your business is looking to the finance team for clear guidance on what it can afford, what could be cut, and how to rebalance. The role of the CFO is to protect the company’s assets, manage risk, maintain effective internal controls. Remember to keep your focus on the company, industry trends and developments, and the economy’s current and likely future performance. 

But, there are ways that you can lead your team to overcome these challenges, and emerge stronger. 

Firstly, make sure you have a full understanding of the major functions across the business. Use this time to strengthen relationships, and truly understand their various strategies, challenges and priorities. You’ll be more likely to be able to provide teams with valuable answers that they need, while getting more detailed information from them, leading to more accuracy in your projections.

Secondly, develop strong financial partners and find efficient ways of working together. Partnerships allow for more specialisation and a more streamlined business. They also allow you to focus on the core activities of your business and mitigate risks.

Amid the pandemic, we developed two strategic partnerships that created growth and more opportunities for our business, while addressing some customer challenges. We partnered with EML to get our new expense management solution, RoomexPay to market to support key workers travelling during these times.

We also worked with Affiniture to increase credit payment periods and reduce pressure on our customers, because we understand businesses have fewer resources due to COVID-19.

Thirdly, relax and think long term. Yes, this pandemic has absolutely changed the way we do business, especially in travel. But if you stay calm and think clearly, you will be able to identify innovative, intelligent, and growth-oriented measures - which are in the best long term interests of the business.

Workforce travel will change dramatically due to the impacts of the pandemic.  

Hotel availability has reduced, so if your team is used to staying in a particular chain, be flexible, and look at other options. Contactless payment transactions are on the rise, so it could be helpful arming your staff with prepaid cards like RoomexPay, that also offer mobile payments rather than cash. They offer little risk, as the amount of money accessible on each card is directed by the finance team. I think about it like this -travelling with cash is going the way of ordering goods using a fax machine! It also reduces pressure on your travelling workforce, that is even more cost-conscious today and would prefer to not pay out of pocket.

I also see travel moving to a centralised platform. Many companies manage travel through multiple leisure sites, excel sheets and notebooks. It’s hard to actually get a hold of what you're spending, on who, and why. I also foresee, as budgets tighten, compliance with travel policies will be even more essential.

Travel policies have always been very important, but now on top of the assistance they provide to adhering to budgets, all policies will require editing due to the complete change in travel procedure as an effect of the pandemic. Ensure your travel policies have been updated from a cost, risk, and duty of care perspective. 

There are a few things the finance teams can do today to adjust to the 'new normal.'

Just as our governments and our businesses are adjusting to ‘a new normal’ - the people that make up our teams are too. The stress of the pandemic has hit everyone, both personally and professionally. First and foremost, your most valuable company asset is your people.

A big focus of mine has been putting in time and effort into creating a team culture. A happy and engaged team that supports and helps each other and is motivated to add value to the business is key in the current situation. Challenges and surprises abound at the moment, and a team that enjoys working together and having some fun will navigate these issues much more smoothly.

I also have gained more appreciation of work-life balance and the flexibility needed to achieve this. Try to get better awareness into what’s going on in staff members' lives, because it impacts their workday and their work performance. On the same note, working remotely is different than working in the office in many ways- and I’ve noticed a big, positive change in the efficiency of our processes.

It seems this trend of working remotely when possible will continue, so use this time to consider processes, automation opportunities, integrations, and team compositions.

Ask yourself, if you were designing the department from scratch today, what would you put in place? How could you be better set up for success when the upswing returns? Get used to working without paper, and saving documents into the cloud rather than locally, and communicating and collaborating regularly. 

Use this drastic change to give yourself and your team a fresh start. 

We’re living in a very different world today, and we all need time to process, react, regroup, and reset. Roomex, has been providing assistance to companies as they get back on the road on everything from sourcing, negotiating and managing safe, clean, flexible accommodation to helping them remotely roll out prepaid expense cards and expense management platform to travelling workforces.

Get in touch with one of our travel experts to learn more about how Roomex can save your business time and money, and get you back on the road safely. 

 

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How Finance Teams Can Lead Their Company into Recovery Amid COVID-19

How Finance Teams Can Lead Their Company into Recovery Amid COVID-19

Since the start of March, the impacts of COVID-19 have hit nearly every industry. It’s safe to say we’re slowly adjusting to our new ‘normal’ - but the...

Read More
{post_body={body={html=

COVID-19 has quickly impacted nearly every aspect of our lives. It’s taken a serious toll on our healthcare infrastructure, the economy, and of course, travel. Many of us have been working remotely since the beginning of March - and have somewhat adjusted to a new normal. Our governments have put restrictions in place to protect us, and as they begin to lift, we face new questions, anxieties, and challenges. 

Key Workers have been travelling throughout the lockdown, and many businesses have updated their operations to best serve them, and keep them safe. In the travel industry, hotels have completely overhauled operations to increase cleanliness and safety of both guests and employees. Now, as construction and manufacturing industries, for example, get back on the road, businesses must quickly react to ensure they are in safe accommodation. On top of this, many businesses are facing budget and staff cuts, making managing these already difficult to coordinate bookings even more of a challenge. 

How to book safe accommodation for your workforce while remaining cost and time-sensitive:

1. Be flexible

Many hotels have closed down or halted operations due to the impacts of COVID-19. Particular chains or hotels that you’re used to booking may no longer be available. The good news is, there is often a similar property that is in the same price range and distance. It’s also good practice to book rooms with refundable rates at this time - as it’s had to predict the next change or amendment to our current travel restrictions. Platforms like Roomex are constantly updating their inventory with hotels that are available, and that are offering refundable rates. Our hotel experts promise a one hour response time and will negotiate and confirm project bookings on your behalf.  They will alert you to any changes you need to be aware of upon arrival with a confirmation call to the hotel, and are available for contact through live chat at any time. 

2. Get ready for a very different travel experience 

Workforce travel is not what it used to be. The entire experience has changed, from check-in, to how rooms look, to the way food is served. Many hotels have implemented social distancing screens at check-in, promise sanitized key cards, and have removed any non-essentials from the rooms such as menus and binders. Most hotels have halted dine-in services and will deliver boxed meals to guest rooms or for takeaway. Since we’re constantly negotiating large group rates, we promise safe hotels in-line with the WHO’s cleaning guidelines. Our team has clear direction into what particular hotels have done to ensure safety and they will inform you prior to check-in. 

3. Educate your staff on staying safe while on the road, and check in on them

Your most important asset is your team. They will likely be excited to get back to work and to some level of normalcy, but with caution. Just like you, the pandemic has impacted their day to day and how safe they feel while leaving their homes. You’ll want to provide them with the most up to date travel information for the location they are working, how to interact with colleagues and others on the job. Our hotel experts can guide you on how to have these conversations and send them off with helpful advice.

We’ve updated our Duty of Care map so you’re able to get historical and future booking data so if there is another hotspot, you know what staff may have to quarantine. We can also provide bespoke, detailed reports on travel history and spend should you require it. If your staff needs anything on the road such as meeting rooms, meal services or meeting supplies like computers or projectors we can also work with you to accommodate any special requests. 

4. Reach out to our hotel experts to book group and project bookings 

Business travel is different - and managing project bookings and long term stays are as well. Coordinating  projects may seem difficult, but with some help, patience, and expertise, your team will be back on the road in no time. 

Our hotel experts have been reacting to the changes that the travel industry has undergone over the last few months - and have been making project bookings on behalf of front line staff and key workers.

Get in touch with one of our travel experts here and we’ll advise your next group booking. 

 

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Thank you for submitting your email, one of our workforce travel experts will be in touch with you within one working day.

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How to manage travel post lockdown: from project bookings to long term stays

How to manage travel post lockdown: from project bookings to long term stays

COVID-19 has quickly impacted nearly every aspect of our lives. It’s taken a serious toll on our healthcare infrastructure, the economy, and of course,...

Read More