What you can learn as a recreational entrepreneur from Thomas Cook's bankruptcy
Following OAD, tour operator Thomas Cook has been declared bankrupt. Not only travelers are duped. Uncertain times also dawn on cooperating holiday parks and hotels. Do you get your money back in the event of a bankruptcy from a tour operator?
If you work with external channels, you make agreements with the tour operators about the commissions, the offer and the collection of payments. Tour operators often want to collect money themselves, because they make it "simple" for the holiday parks. You don't have to go after your money yourself. But is this the best way? No, because: * You often only get the money when the guest has left; * You don't have control over the momney if the guest cancels the reservation; * You don't have your money in case of emergencies.
My advise to holiday parks: collect your own momney! There is a good that you now think: 'Whoo, quite some work, collecting the money yourself'. This is not true. You can automate this fully with your reservation system. A good reservation system supports you to collect money in advance by sending a payment link directly when booking. In case the guest makes a payment, the payment is automatically processed in the reservation system. Does the payment period expire without payment? Then you will receive a notification, making sure that you automatically can send a reminder to receive the money before arrival.
Strengthen your position
Collaborating with tour operators is definitely recommended. A tour operator has an extemely broad reach. Your offer at the tour operator increases your occupation and your brand awareness. By managing your money yourself, you will gain a strong financial position as an organization.
Choose a payment plan per channel
Set the desired payment arrangement per channel, for example a payment arrangement for online reservations via Booking.com and Expedia. You decide which amount need to be paid and within what period the invoice need to be paid. In this way, you control your payments.
Our advise: Receive the money directly from the guest, even if they book via a tour operator. With this, you have access to your own money. Even when a tour operator goes bankrupt.