Trade-only accommodation-only provider Getabed is moving into the traditional European beach market but insists it is not going “toe to toe” with big volume players in the sector.
The 21-year-old bed bank, which up to now has specialised in long-haul, worldwide and European city properties, is now offering hotels in Turkey, the Balearics, Canary Islands, Cyprus and Greek islands including Rhodes, Crete and Corfu via its website getabed.co.uk.
Managing director Matt Stuart said: “We are looking to focus on quality rather than go toe to toe with bed banks like Medhotels.”
Although most of the product is already featured by rivals, Getabed has secured exclusive prices and room types, according to commercial director Tony Quinn.
The bed bank has also rolled out its ‘directors’ choice’ recommendation across the new beach portfolio. The brand is given to hotels meeting set criteria on standards such as location, complaint ratios and quality to enable agents to make “safer and quicker” decisions on which hotels to book.
Around 40% of hotels on the directors’ choice list – which currently covers its top 50 hotels – are from the new beach range. “The challenge for agents that are dynamically packaging is product selection because there are so many hotels to choose from,” he added.
The bed bank has launched the range as part of its expansion strategy and based on agent demand. Product is sourced from direct contracts and other bed banks and wholesalers.
Quinn stressed the bed bank was still chasing volume sales but said: “We want volume but we want in a way that is sustainable and profitable.”
He added: “There is too much capacity in the market. You have to decide where you add value within the market.”
Stuart expects further consolidation in the sector. “I think one of the bedbanks is going to drop away,” he said.
Further expansion over the next 12 months is likely to include niche markets such as ski, added Stuart. “There is a lot more flexibility now in terms of air lift into ski resorts.”
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