This article will walk you through how to create a typical discount rate type. In our example, we will create a 10% discount for repeat guests, but the same principle and steps can be used to create a different percentage discount or a discount for another purpose, such as a AAA or military rate.
In ThinkReservations, a Rate Type holds the deposit policy, availability, rates & restrictions, and optionally, a coupon code. The coupon or promo code is what allows a guest to qualify into the rate type. If they don't enter the coupon code before choosing their room, then they haven't indicated to the system that they qualify to view a certain rate. Coupon codes don't discount a rate, they allow a guest to have access to a certain rate type.
Step 1: Create the new Rate Type
- Navigate to Settings > Rate Types
- Click on the black New button on the top right
- Fill out the information on the General Information tab for this new rate...
- Give the Rate Type a NAME. The name is arbitrary but will appear to your guests.
- Set a DESCRIPTION. The description here will educate your guests on what this rate is.
- Set an (optional) Coupon Code to limit the visibility of this rate type. Only those guests that know the code or use a special link will be able to qualify into this rate type.
- Specify the DEPOSIT policy for this particular rate type.
- Next, click on the Rates & Restrictions tab.
Step 2: Import Rates and restrictions
- Click the Copy... button on the top right of the Rates & Restrictions tab.
- In the popup, choose the rate type that you would like to import or "copy" rates and restrictions from. In our example, we are using the Best Available Rate because it holds our normal rate.
- Specify the date range that you would like to import. This will also be the date range that the special is available for. This is because, without pricing, the special cannot be booked.
- Check the boxes for the items that you would like to import from the selected rate type. In our example, we are going to play it safe and simply check all of the boxes.
- Check all the boxes for the room types that are part of this special. In our case, all room types.
- Click the Copy button at the bottom to import the information. You will see the calendar update.
Important Note: Repeat the import process anytime you make subsequent changes to your Best Available Rate. This is because this rate is not linked automatically to any other rate type.
Step 3: Apply the Discount
- Click on the Yield Management tab in the light blue bar at the top.
- Click the green Add button.
- In the new line that was added, enter a 0 (zero) in the first box under OCCUPANCY.
- Enter -10 under the ADJUSTMENT box. Note the hyphen at the beginning to indicate a negative. If we wanted to give a different discount, simply enter a different number here.
- Click the Save button on the top right to save your new Rate Type!
Note: The base rate under Rates & Restrictions will always show the base rate, not the new discounted rate if you are using a Yield Management Rule
It's also possible to adjust the pricing on the Rates & Restrictions tab in place of using a Yield Management rule.
Step 4: Test Your New Rate Type
- Navigate to the main booking calendar.
- Choose the new rate type from the drop-down right above the calendar.
- If you don't see the rates superimposed on the calendar, toggle them with the View button.
- Verify your new rates are accurate.
Next, let's test on the online booking engine.
- Navigate to your online booking engine from your website.
- Enter your test travel dates that coincide with the dates that you made your special available.
- Indicate that you have a Special Rate by clicking on Special Rates - if you don't have them expanded by default.
- Enter the promotional code you chose to use in the box.
- Click the blue Search button.
- Check for your discounted rate, and make sure the name and description look the way you would like it to.
Step 5: Promote and use your new Rate Type
When you and your staff are booking this rate, they don't need to know the coupon code, they just need to select the new rate type from the drop-down above the calendar and book on that rate type.
They can also change the rate type for a reservation by editing the booking. You edit the booking by clicking the pencil edit button below the status on the right.
When you edit the booking, just select the rate type from the dropdown under RATE and click Update.
To make it easier for your prospective guests to enter the pomo code, you can make the Special Rates box that allows the guests to enter the code to be expanded at the start. To do this:
- Navigate to Settings > Booking Engine
- Check the box labeled: Default the special rates to start off expanded
- Ensure this box is also checked: Allow guests to select special rates (Promotional Codes and Customer Groups)
- Click the Save button at the bottom of the page.
Finally, you can also create a special link that has the coupon code built right in. This makes sharing the special via email and social media easier for your guests. For example:
See here for more on special links and how to use them.
If you have any questions, please reach out to support!