The idyllic promise of a dive business is a dream many have sought, but seldom truly achieved. The promise of a tropical paradise and endless scuba diving that is thought to come with owning a dive business is often eclipsed by overwhelming operational and administrative work.
Being stuck behind a desk to keep the business running is coming to an end for many business owners. There are now several reservation management systems on offer for smaller hotels to choose from. Finding the right software that fits your business can be a daunting task, so we have compiled the most important elements a reservation software should have to meet the needs of a dive resort.
Accepting Direct Bookings
While you as a business owner might be tired of answering holiday enquiries, guests are also becoming impatient and less willing to wait a day or more to find out if there is availability for their desired dates. Having a reservation software that is able to accept direct bookings will not only simplify your life but will also significantly increase your direct sales. A recent study from Triptease.com has shown that nearly two thirds of guests prefer to book directly with the hotels. You’ll also be less reliant on OTA’s that often charge a hefty commission.
Here is an example of what a booking engine for your liveaboard or diving retreat could look like: Make a test booking here
Automating your administrative tasks
It is important that you find a reservation system that allows you to save time on your administrative tasks. This is done by having a system that is able to receive online bookings and payments, automatically generating invoices, lists and reports, and sending automated emails to your guests like booking confirmations, travel reminders, and packing lists. This will enable you to spend less time behind the computer and get the chance to focus on other areas of your business.
Operating a dive resort can often feel like running two businesses at the same time. On the one side you have the hotel offering accommodation and on the other side you have the dive center. The reservation software should not compromise your ability to run both sides of the business, but instead strengthen your ability to do so. Therefore, it is important that the reservation system is able to offer you the necessary customisation and control over all inventory such as accommodation, activities and services. Next look for a system that is able to combine these inventory items to create packages that can be then sold to your guests. The ability of creating packages will be a tremendous strength to your business and will simplify and enhance your ability to sell to your guests.
The honest truth behind why people start a diving business is not a promising ROI or financial growth, but instead lies in the lifestyle that comes along with owning and running a dive business. The real value and gain in owning a dive center is the fact that you get to live in a tropical destination and have the opportunity to dive whenever you get the chance.
The reason to start a dive center is the life that it promises, each part of the business should be adding to that dream and vision. It is therefore important that you find the right tools that help you fulfil that dream.
Many dive business owners find themselves not completely attaining that dream by being stuck in their office taking care of administrative tasks such as answering emails and organising their weekly dives. There are a lot of factors that come into play when running a dive resort, and ensuring its success means staying on top of everything.
Most dive resorts receive reservations on an inquiry basis and are therefore unable to accept direct bookings. Rooms are allocated manually in Excel sheets and emails are personally responded to where the same questions are answered over and over again. On top of running a hotel, you are also operating a Dive Center that comes with additional tasks and challenges. Finding the right reservation system that allows you to manage both your accommodation and your diving activities without breaking the bank can be a real struggle. However, once you do find a software that meets the needs of your business it will drastically change how you operate your business. The key is in finding a system that will not compromise on customer service and maximise efficiency by streamlining your business processes.
Learn more about the features that Bookinglayer offers in order to enable you to run your dive resort or liveaboard more efficiently Find more information