In a revolutionary move, the online booking community, Bidroom.com, announced that it will stop charging hotels commissions for bookings on their website. Bidroom founders, Michael Ros and Casper Knieriem, have decided to completely abandon the standard commission model, lowering their commission rate from two to zero percent. Hotels, apartments, B&Bs and vacation rentals can now sign up at Bidroom.com and receive direct bookings from guests free of charge.
“We started off by charging just two percent commission, a symbolic rate, to make a stand against the outrageous state of the OTA (Online Travel Agency) market. We are firmly against the hideous practices of the major booking websites that charge up to 25% commission, emptying hotels’ budgets and guests’ wallets”, says Casper Knieriem, co-founder and CFO.
New business model
Instead of charging commission, the company will focus on offering additional services to hotels with their freemium business model. Hotel managers can choose from two plans: Bidroom Free and Bidroom Plus. The Bidroom Free plan allows hotels to upload a limited number of images and add room and amenities descriptions.
Bidroom Plus enables hotels to add more images, and more importantly, make their accommodations appear higher in the search results. Bidroom Plus hotels will also have the option to connect with channel manager software and to install a direct link to their hotel website on their Bidroom page. In an industry where hotels must deal with search engine giants and high commission rates, Bidroom Plus could offer many a profitable platform to connect with guests.
Bidroom.com still requires accommodation managers to offer the guests a minimum of five percent discount off the rates they post on the major booking sites. Such arrangement makes using Bidroom.com profitable both for the guests and the hoteliers.
Bidroom as a Service (BaaS)
Being the world’s commission-free booking platform is not enough. Bidroom introduced a multi-language website to attract even more users. An expansion including Dutch, Polish, Russian and French pages is already online, with Italian, Spanish and German to follow soon.
“We like to call our new model ‘Bidroom as a Service’ (BaaS). Right from the beginning, our mission has been about bringing fairness to the booking industry. The entire team is extremely excited with the revolution that’s just about to begin,” states Ros.