Group Booking FAQs

Seeking answers about Group bookings revenue management? Check out our FAQs for insights from industry experts.

Group Bookings Top Revenue Manager Questions Answered (FAQs)

In recent years, optimizing group bookings have become all the rage among revenue managers wanting to increase their airlines’ bottom line. Since group bookings have been neglected for a long time, the technology and strategies used to onboard new customers, provide quotes, handle bookings, and offer post-ticketing support have mostly become obsolete post the pandemic. Here we attempt to tackle the most pressing issues faced by revenue managers looking to navigate the modern group booking landscape.
Business seminars and their discussions illustrating the questions answered by the GroupRM team

Frequently asked questions

Helpie FAQ

  • Can The Airline Set Up Customized Policies Based On Group Type?

    Yes. The airline can use a group booking solution to automatically identify the group type and put in place customized policies based on departure time, region, group size, relationship with your airline, etc., including how long they can take to pay, the advance payment required, the maximum possible discount, and cancellation options.

  • What If The Customers Want To Modify Group Bookings?

    Yes, the group booking software supports post-booking modifications. Passengers can make changes with a few clicks, such as upsizing, downsizing, itinerary changing, date changing, etc. Undoubtedly, the airline staff can save a lot of time by not manually making these changes for the passengers, and the customers also get quick service.

  • What If Your Airline’s Travel Agency Partners Need To Make Recurring Group Bookings (Series Bookings) Over A Period In The Same Sector?

    Nowadays, travel agents must depend on spreadsheets or calls to your sales desk or call center to make series reservations. You can automate the entire process with a series booking interface in the group booking solution, GroupRM. Instead of the travel agent making multiple group bookings manually, they can use the series booking interface to enter their requirements, such as origin, destination, dates, the price they are willing to pay, etc. The system can automatically reserve the seats for them, and from your end, you can negotiate the fare and even accept or reject parts of the series booking based on your policies and demand.

  • How Will A Self-Service Solution Help Travel Managers And Corporate Customers?

    You can provide a self-booking portal for each of your travel manager/ corporate customers so they can access special fares based on your relationship with them. Using the tool, they can even raise & view requests, make & update payments, manage bookings, and see comprehensive reports. They’ll be delighted with the experience and book more frequently with you.

  • Should Airlines Provide Travel Agent Partners With A Solution To Make Bookings Independently?

    There are many great benefits to providing your travel agents with a way to book group tickets through self-service. Using the platform, they can view their request status, negotiate fares, make payments, modify/ cancel bookings, update passenger name lists, etc. Giving your travel agents this level of convenience can significantly augment their booking experience and compel them to make more bookings with you.

  • What If The Customer Isn’t Happy With The Quote?

    This is where the negotiation feature of the revenue management solution will come in handy. Your revenue managers and group desk analysts will have the option to negotiate with the customer via an online interface in a process that is easy, quick, and transparent.

  • How Quickly Can A Customer Get A Quote Through A Self-Service Portal?

    You have two options. You can automatically provide an instant group quote based on pre-set policy, competitor fare, load factor, etc. Or you can prepare a customized quote with markups and send it to the customer. Either way, the customer can use the web portal to negotiate the fares with you and come up with an acceptable rate. Your quick response time and ability to negotiate in real time will help you win more conversions.

  • What Is The Best Way For Airlines To Reduce Quote Turnaround Time To Improve Customer Experience?

    Airlines can bring down their group booking turnaround time to a few minutes. With automation, customers can get instant quotes based on pre-set criteria. Also, you can reduce turnaround time by cutting down on the negotiation process with personalized offers that consider customers’ budgets, ancillary needs, past buying habits, etc. Another great way to shorten the turnaround time for a group booking is to offer self-service; you need to allow customers to quickly make payments and easily change their itineraries without reaching you.

  • How Can Airlines Get Started With Improving Customer Experience Along With Optimizing Prices?

    A great way to improve customer experience is to enable self-service for group booking customers. Instead of collecting booking requests via Google forms or calls, you can provide customers with a web portal for requesting group bookings. Crucially, the customers can purchase ancillaries and make modifications or cancellations on their own through the web portal, making your life simple and elevating their experience. This move will also increase the productivity of the sales and revenue management teams.

  • What Are Special Group Fares?

    Airlines can use a group booking solution, like GroupRM, to set up customized policies that provide discounted fares for special customers, like travel agents and corporates. You can even set up custom policies to offer group fares based on factors, including days to departure, load factor, origin, destination, group size, etc.

  • How Can An Airline Determine The Right Group Fare?

    You can quote group fare with any of the three pricing models. First, there are special group fares, where you charge customers based on their buying patterns or relationship with you. Then, there’s competitor-based pricing, and finally, displacement cost-based pricing.

  • Can Automation Resolve The Disagreements Between The Sales And Revenue Management Teams Regarding Group Fares?

    Yes, absolutely. Using an automated system for group pricing, you can, in real time, provide optimal group fares to people who request a quote. Since the quote considers whatever criteria the sales and revenue management teams have set, along with dynamic pricing based on competitor rate, market demand, load factor, etc., the conflict between sales and revenue management is virtually gone.

  • What Results Can An Airline Expect From Automating The Group Booking Process?

    Customers of GroupRM, the AI-based group revenue management software, have seen an increase in their group revenue by as much as 5% in a short while by sending real-time quotes based on the customer buying pattern, load factor, competitor rate, and market demand. Also, airlines can see up to a 50% increase in group booking materialization rates by using automation to follow up with customers for payment based on pre-set policy. Over time, airlines can get up to a 28% rise in group booking revenue.

  • Isn't Automation Just A Fad? Don't Companies Use Words Like AI, Automation, Etc., For Almost Everything Nowadays?

    While it is true that words like AI and automation make it to even air cooler ads, it is a highly effective way for airlines to increase revenue. Automation, especially when it comes to sendinginstant quotes, payment reminders, and enforcing policies for various accounts, can free up the time of revenue managers to focus on impactful work, like negotiating higher group fares, rather than be bogged down by mundane work.

  • Where Are The Key Areas That Airlines Need To Focus On When Making Group Booking Easier And More Profitable?

    Overall, the group booking landscape is a prime candidate for innovation because it leaves the following and more to be desired.

    • Direct booking confirmation
    • Special group fares
    • Unified platform to request and accept fares
    • Dashboard to track and manage all group bookings
    • Ability to book special meals along with other ancillaries
    • Self-service portal for updating PNR
    • Instant payment through credit card, BSP, wire transfer, cash
    • Ability to generate EMD against payment

  • What Is The Most Impactful Thing An Airline Can Do To Optimize The Revenue From Group Bookings?

    In a single word: automation. Airlines’ customers are more likely to accept the group quote of the airline with the quickest response time. So, automating your group booking process to reduce your response time to a few minutes is the best thing you can do as a first step.

  • What Are The Common Issues Faced By Airlines Concerning Group Bookings?

    • Manual & inefficient process of requesting group quote
    Customers typically must call the sales desk or email the airline and wait for days—sometimes weeks—to receive a quote. This delay costs airlines 4 out of every five customers, who pick the airline with the fastest quote.

    • Lack of personalization
    Manual group booking inconveniences groups that need any level of personalization. Every little detail must be emailed/ conveyed via call. The response time for manually negotiating fares and personalizing the group travel experience, with different meal options, etc., is a huge dealbreaker for most customers.'

    • Lack of price transparency
    When the quote is generated, the customer may find that the price per ticket has changed since they inquired, leaving them unsatisfied with the booking process.

    • Inability to track and manage group requests effectively
    Most importantly, the airline loses a ton of revenue over time because they need an efficient way of tracking group booking requests and following up with them to negotiate, make payments, update PNR, etc.

  • What Are Group Bookings?

    A group booking is where nine or more passengers travel together on the same flight, date, and itinerary. Typically, groups are made up of businesspeople on MICE [Meetings, Incentives, Conventions/Conferences and Exhibitions] trips or retail customers, including Visiting Friends and Relatives (VFR), tourists, pilgrims, school/ college groups, sports teams, destination wedding attendees, and the participants of other social functions as well.

  • Can The Airline Set Up Customized Policies Based On Group Type?

    Yes. The airline can use a group booking solution to automatically identify the group type and put in place customized policies based on departure time, region, group size, relationship with your airline, etc., including how long they can take to pay, the advance payment required, the maximum possible discount, and cancellation options.

Get detailed insights on how revenue managers can increase group booking revenue by 28%

Scroll to Top

Schedule a Call