WorldRes.com’s WO chain code for agents, rolled out in June on most
of the major GDSs, could eventually account for one-fifth of all
hotel reservations made through the company’s technology, according
to a WorldRes executive.
The San Mateo, Calif., firm’s main focus remains the real-time
distribution of its hotel customers’ rooms via the Internet, said
Kurt Weinsheimer, vice president of marketing. But the debut of WO
in multiple GDSs is the company’s first wide-scale agent-oriented
Weinsheimer said company officials are pleased with agents’ use
of WO thus far, and they hope it will grow as travel agents become
more aware of the WO code.
WorldRes offers the WO chain code in Galileo/Apollo, Worldspan
and Sabre. The company plans to offer WO in Amadeus by the first
quarter of 2003.
“Our main target is travel agents interested in increasing the
leisure business they’re doing,” Weinsheimer said. “Independent
hotels in leisure destinations are not well-covered traditionally
in the GDS. We want to be able to provide that for travel agents so
they can offer a wider range of products to their customers.”
Most of WorldRes’ hotel clientele comprises small or independent
properties of 50 rooms or more the types of hotels that
historically have been absent from the GDS due to either the cost
of the technology or the fees of associating with a rep firm.
WorldRes has chosen to specifically focus on destinations that
either have easy access to an airport or are fairly close to a
Hotels in those spots make up the bulk of the 1,500 properties
available to agents through WO.
“The top destinations we’ve been seeing don’t mirror the top
destinations in the GDSs, but they are in line with what we
expected to see,” said Weinsheimer, citing Jackson Hole, Wyo.,
Monterey, Calif., and Aspen, Colo., as examples of top-selling
areas on WO. Ultimately, WorldRes plans to bring 3,000 to 4,000
properties online through the WO chain code.
Weinsheimer also stressed that all hotels listed on WO pay
agents full commission, which he said should alleviate some
retailers’ concerns about booking smaller, independent
“Every hotel that signs on must agree to pay 10% commission,” he
said, noting that WorldRes does not participate in commission
“If they have trouble with it, we take them off. It’s not good
for the hotel, and it’s not good for the travel agents.”
The smallest of WorldRes’ hotel clients, who don’t pay agents’
commissions, can be booked via the GDS through a different chain
Web site: www.world res.com.