In recent years, a lot of booking portals have been created on the market. There is nothing surprising in this because everyone is looking for booking opportunities. From individual private guests through families with children looking for holidays, to business guests looking for a one-night stay. So what to do to avoid getting lost in the tangle of offers available on the internet and choose the one that will be the most appropriate?
Hotel Reservation Service. How did it all start?
The meaning of the HRS abbreviation is simply the Hotel Reservation System. Interestingly, when the company was founded a few years ago, it was not done with the intention of operating an OTA website. The company was established in German Cologne.
As you can find on the website, it just started with two employees and two phone lines. It dates back to 1972 when HRS was established as a sole proprietorship. Five years later she was transformed into a limited liability company and Robert Ragge became its president.
Interestingly enough, the first booking system was developed in the German company in 1985. Thanks to this, obtaining information about available rooms became much faster and less time-consuming. In 1989, the first catalog for corporate clients was created, with special rates for companies.
The first website belonging to HRS was created in 1995, and in 2000 they stopped publishing paper hotel catalogs. In 2005, the company was a winner of the 1st place in a survey for the Business-Traveler Award 2004 in the category „Best Internet Service for Corporate Travellers”.
HRS was one of the top three service providers for 5 consecutive years. In the following years, the system created by HRS was also awarded regularly. A handful of interesting facts about the system:
- a contract was signed for the arrangement of business trips with the German Army,
- during UEFA Euro 2008 a special website was created to book accommodation in „host cities”,
- the HRS office in Poland was established in Warsaw in 2007,
- in 2009, HRS was awarded the German Standards Brand Prize,
- from 2010, you can also book hotels when you visit the Facebook fan page of the company,
What distinguishes HRS in comparison with other OTA’s?
At first glance, the website is not different from the offers of competitive portals. Since you already know the rules of operation and cooperation with Booking, there will also be no problems here. The layout of the home page is very similar to other OTAs.
An important thing, especially for the user looking for accommodation, is what is in the first view, which will be seen after opening the website. The clearly divided upper bar immediately directs the user to the tab which is the most important from his point of view.
When you visit the „deals and offers” subpage, in the menu you’ll find HRS Deals, Rental cars, Holiday in the Alps, Deutsche Bahn. Below you can see Rental Cars and My Bed in the Alps.
It is significant, therefore, that all elements of interest to the guest during the journey are on one subpage. Thus, the website eliminates the situation where the reservation is not made due to the lack of relevant information in one place or its pointless scattering in various places on the website.
HRS Deals, Discounts in one place.
HRS Deals. Source: HRS.
A simple search engine contains the best offers, with a specified city, date, and the best price facility in a given location, and an additional advantage is the fact that it shows which offers are newly added and which were visible on the website earlier.
Simple filters are added, namely the dates of your stay and the type of hotel facility, where you can choose:
- City Break,
- Nature and Activity Holidays,
- Beach, Coast and Ocean,
- Design and Luxury.
The next elements to choose from are: the price range and the three most important free services that users are greatly interested in (catering, Wi-Fi, parking places).
A car for rent
Car rental. Source: HRS.com
The result of cooperation with SIXT is the development of a separate subpage within special offers, where you can rent a car to be collected at the place and time of your choice and decide where and when you want to return it. It makes travel arrangements more comprehensive, thanks to which there are many less issues that a potential guest has to take care of on his own.
Theme hotels. Source: HRS
Tab for those looking for a particular type of hotel. Thoughtful movement on the part of the German giant, because once again it minimizes the risk that the potential guests will leave the site, unable to find accommodation in the facility that interests them. You can choose from the following theme hotel facilities available on the website:
- Chateau and Castle,
So, in one place are included filters that allow you to choose accommodation according to your needs and preferences. Thus, you do not have to search dozens of subpages to find the type of facility you are interested in.
Exclusive Price Offers
Exclusive Deals. Source: HRS
On the intermediary’s website you can read that the Exclusive Price offer means a guaranteed 10% discount in comparison with competitive websites despite identical booking terms and conditions. In addition, in the event of non-compliance with the terms of the contract, the bookers are entitled to a refund of 20 euros for the room per night.
Deutsche Bahn. Source: HRS.com
For those who prefer traveling by train there is a tab which was developed in collaboration with the German railways. Thanks to this, when looking for transport, the user stays on the site without going to external sites, which also reduces the risk of resignation from the previously found offer.
How does it work in practice?
I have already mentioned the most important aspects as regards the promotion on the site, but what is the situation like in practice? When you visit individual subpages devoted to theme hotels, promotional prices, exclusive price and newly opened hotels, the site filters are modified in such a way as to display what you are looking for. You move within the same offers, but they are filtered according to your needs.
* All graphic elements belong to HRS – Hotel Reservation Service Robert Ragge GmbH