GDS Meaning: The Role of a Global Distribution System in the Hotel Industry
12 July 2023
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Every day, thousands of travelers around the world plan their trips. But how do they find the perfect accommodation for their needs? A crucial answer lies in understanding the GDS meaning, or Global Distribution System meaning. This powerful tool is revolutionizing the hospitality industry, making the management of bookings and global distribution of hotels more efficient than ever. Let’s explore together in the new article on the Octorate blog what is GDS in travel, and what are the benefits of using a Global Distribution System (GDS) in the hospitality industry, the features, the advantages, the main differences with OTAs and how to maximize them thanks to integration with Octorate!
Through Global Distribution Systems, hotels can distribute information on rates, room availability, and other relevant details in real time, making the booking process easier for travel agents and enabling hotels to reach a potentially global audience.
For instance, have you ever been to a travel agency and noticed how your travel agent can book flights, hotels, and other tourist services with a few clicks? Well, he or she was most likely using a GDS. Among the most famous ones, we find Amadeus and Galileo, which are concrete examples of how these systems can improve and simplify the distribution of hotel rooms, further expanding the GDS meaning in the hospitality industry.
Using Global Distribution System in Hospitality offers several advantages in the travel sector.
Firstly – as mentioned – it allows hotels to increase their visibility and reach a wide network of travel agents and potential customers. This translates into greater exposure of the hotel and an increase in bookings.
In addition, a Global Distribution System simplifies the booking process for travel agents, allowing them to quickly compare rates and room availability of different hospitality structures. This encourages more effective collaboration between travel agents and hotels, reinforcing the role of it in hospitality.
To make the most of GDS in the travel industry and truly comprehend the GDS meaning, it’s important to adopt some key strategies.
Firstly, hotels should integrate a Booking Engine that interfaces with the Global Distribution System. This allows the management of direct bookings and automatic synchronization of rates and room availability on distribution channels.
Additionally, collaborating with travel agencies and participating in marketing programs with GDS can increase hotel visibility and attract a wider clientele, further emphasizing the importance of the GDS meaning.
Finally, implementing a property management system (Hotel PMS) compatible with the Global Distribution System simplifies the management of bookings and data synchronization, solidifying what GDS means in travel.
An important question that arises when talking about distribution channels in hospitality is: what distinguishes a GDS from an OTA (Online Travel Agency)?
OTAs, like Booking.com or Expedia, are online platforms directly accessible by travelers. These travelers can search and book flights, hotels, and other tourist services without necessarily going through a travel agency (as the OTAs themselves act as intermediaries between hotels and potential customers, allowing the latter to compare rates and reviews on a structure to make an informed decision).
On the other hand, the GDS is primarily used by travel agencies to book flights, hotels, and car rentals on behalf of their clients. It’s a kind of backstage in the travel booking industry, a hub where travel agencies have access to a vast catalog of travel options.
Therefore, the main difference between GDS hotel and OTAs lies in their nature and approach to distribution.
Global distribution systems are mainly aimed at travel agents and group bookings, facilitating distribution on various channels and providing tools for managing bookings and data synchronization. OTAs, on the other hand, focus primarily on direct booking by travelers, offering a unified platform to find and book rooms in different hotels.
To function properly, the GDS uses specific codes, known as GDS codes. These codes are used to uniquely identify each hotel within the global distribution system. This means that each hotel has its unique GDS code, greatly simplifying the booking process and reducing the possibility of errors.
The hospitality and tourism industry is a sector in constant evolution. Today, it is essential for hotel to be present on the main distribution channels like the GDS, as you’ve understood from what you’ve read so far.
Did you know that the Channel Manager of Octorate Hotel Division – Octorate’s Hotel Management Software – thanks to robust integrations with some of the most important Global Distribution Systems, allows you to instantly share prices and availability on GDS?!
This way, whether you manage a small B&B or a large resort, you can maximize your online distribution on booking channels worldwide, exploiting all the advantages ensured by Global Distribution Systems!
Book a demo now or start your free trial to see how Octorate can improve your Hotel’s performance!
🌐 What is a GDS in travel?
A Global Distribution System (GDS) is a system that connects tourism service providers such as hotels, airlines, and car rental companies with travel agencies worldwide. It allows these service providers to distribute information such as rates and availability in real time, making the booking process easier and more efficient.
✨ What are the benefits of using a GDS in hospitality?
A GDS can significantly increase a hotel’s visibility, providing exposure to a wide network of travel agents and potential customers. It also simplifies the booking process for travel agents, enabling them to quickly compare rates and room availability. In turn, this can lead to increased bookings.
📈 How can hotels leverage the power of GDS?
Hotels can maximize the potential of a GDS by integrating it with a Booking Engine, allowing for the management of direct bookings and automatic synchronization of rates and availability. Collaborating with travel agencies and participating in GDS marketing programs can further increase visibility. Lastly, implementing a property management system compatible with the GDS can simplify booking management and data synchronization.
❓ What is the difference between a GDS and an OTA?
Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) such as Booking.com or Expedia are online platforms that allow travelers to search and book various tourist services directly. GDS, on the other hand, is used primarily by travel agencies to book these services on behalf of their clients. The primary difference is their approach to distribution: OTAs focus on direct booking by travelers, while GDS is aimed at travel agents and group bookings.
🏷️ What are GDS codes?
GDS codes are unique identifiers used within the global distribution system to identify each hotel. This simplifies the booking process and reduces the likelihood of errors.
🏨 How can Octorate help hotels to harness the potential of GDS?
Octorate’s Hotel Management Software offers robust integrations with some of the most important Global Distribution Systems. This allows hotels to instantly share prices and availability on GDS, thereby maximizing online distribution on global booking channels.
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