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Reflections on the global serviced apartment industry: fuelled for growth

Carole Morard

GDS Product & Services Deputy Director, FastBooking

According to a Hotel Booking Agents Association 2013 Member survey, nearly 57% of HBA clients have used serviced apartments more in 2012 than in 2011. Nearly 24% of HBA clients have average stays of 7-29 nights. Of the 80% of corporate bookings for serviced apartments that are made online, price, duration of stay and total cost of stay are primary purchasing factors.

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Demand for serviced apartments has grown dramatically over the last 10 years, fuelled by gradually improving product knowledge, an understanding of the benefits of serviced apartments amongst corporations and leisure customers, improving standards of apartments and the arrival of major brands into the sector. The latest Global Serviced Apartment Industry Report 2013/2014 confirms that the sector continues to mature in certain regions, and there is considerable room for growth.

This type of apartment inventory offers a new guest experience with the convenience and service of a hotel but with the comfort and amenities of a home. With business travellers spending even longer on the road and further away from home, ‘aparthotels’ are becoming increasingly more popular for their unique benefits. Serviced apartments are cost-effective for long lengths of stay and ultimately provide more choice and personalisation.

FastBooking’s partnership began with Amadeus in 2011 under the FG chain code name and from the outset we have worked closely with them to drive hotel bookings via thetravel agency community. Since then, FastBooking’s business on Amadeus has grown by high triple digits year-on-year. Today we are bringing valuable new serviced apartment inventory to Amadeus.  As business travellers seek more cost efficient accommodation, it only makes sense that we strive to meet their needs with the content they want

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We have recently added 135 ‘aparthotels’ to our already extensive Amadeus hotels portfolio*.

There is increased talent mobility in Asia right now which has created a strong demand for quality accommodation including serviced apartments. 25% of our portfolio is located in Asia, where we have a long history and strong commitment. Unique content like this reinforces our steady engagement in the region

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FastBooking’s new inventory will further facilitate our mutual objectives by giving both business and leisure travellers even more choice in terms of budget and accommodation.  Specifically looking at the leisure sector, it is poised for success but customer understanding, product consistency and matching supply in locations with the appropriate demand will need to be addressed by the industry. According to the Association of Serviced Apartment Providers (ASAP), the less exploited leisure serviced apartment market only accounts for 30% of customers using this service.

To find out more about what FastBooking does, please visit our website,www.fastbooking.com

*You can book FastBooking ‘aparthotels’ under the FG chain code.


Tags

Customer Testimonial, Guest Post, Research