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Archive for August, 2011

Labor Day Travel Forecast Down, But Hotel Rates Are Up

Sunday, August 28th, 2011

 
 

What’s ahead for Labor Day travel? AAA indicates travel will be down this year compared to last year, partially because of tough economic times.

That’s good news for any workforce travelers who are going to be out and about on business next weekend, or want to at their destination and ready for business first thing on Tuesday, Sept. 6.

But AAA’s forecast predicts that mid-quality hotel rates will be up 6 percent from where they were a year ago, too.

If that’s a hit your company travel budget doesn’t want to take, pull out your CheckINN Card from CLC Lodging. Small business travelers get an immediately discounted rate of 20-40% off hotels’ lowest published rates when they check in with CLC’s hotel savings card.

Online Hotel Directory Shows Your Savings

When you sign up for CheckINN Direct, you gain access to the online hotel directory where CLC Lodging has used the power of its 9 million room nights annually to negotiate low, low rates for its clients.

The directory shows you exactly what you’ll be charged, as well as how much you’ll save from the hotel’s lowest rate on the Internet.

Plus, your travelers can call CLC’s 24-hour support line whenever they’re on road. It lets them check rates at participating hotels and customer service reps will help them find a hotel with a vacancy, if desired. (You also can make reservations, of course – but if there’s no time or you don’t know your night’s destination, CheckINN Direct supports walk-in availability.)

Participating Hotel Locations

CLC’s hotel savings card is accepted at more than 10,000 hotels across the country. Familiar brand names and leading independent hotels are part of CLC Lodging’s hotel network.

Participating locations include sites within the Best Western, Ramada, Super 8, Comfort Inn, Hyatt Place, Hilton Garden Inn, Sleep Inn, Red Roof Inn chains and more.

Once you sign up your company for the hotel savings card program, you and your employees can start participating – that same night, if needed. There are no minimum usage requirements, and it doesn’t matter if you travel a little or a lot.

Find out more by going to www.CheckINNcard.com.

 

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Posted in CLC Hotels For Workforce Travelers, CLC Workforce Lodging, Uncategorized | No Comments »

Earthquake Pointers for Workforce Travelers

Tuesday, August 23rd, 2011

Today’s 5.8 earthquake along the East Coast is a reminder that workforce travelers need to be ready for anything when they’re on the road.

Start your preparations with reliable and deeply discounted workforce lodging, like the 10,000 hotels available with your membership in CheckINN Direct. Then make sure you’re savvy about how to handle a variety of unexpected travel interruptions, like the earthquake that hit today.

How to Stay Safe During An Earthquake

FEMA, the U.S. Government’s Federal Emergency Management Agency, has some pointers to keep you safe in an earthquake. Be aware that if you’re in a hotel during such an emergency, the sprinklers may activate, the fire alarms may go on and the electric supply may be interrupted.

Earthquake Tips if You’re In a Hotel:

Drop to the ground and take cover under a sturdy table or other piece of furniture. If such shelter isn’t available, simply crouch along an inside corner of your room or building. Use your hands to cover your face and head.

Keep clear of glass, windows, mirrors or other objects that could fall and break, such as lamps or lighting fixtures.

If you’re in bed, stay there until the shaking stops. Protect your head with a pillow. (This tip doesn’t apply if you’re sleeping under a heavy light fixture that could fall on you.)

Only seek shelter in a doorway if it’s close and you know it’s a loadbearing wall.

Don’t go outside until the shaking stops and you’re given an all-clear to go outside. Don’t use the elevators. Once outdoors, stay clear of building walls to avoid falling debris and flying glass.

Earthquake Tips if You’re In Your Vehicle:

Move to the side of the road and stop. Stay in your vehicle. Be aware that if an earthquake occurs while you’re driving, it may feel or sound like you have car trouble.

Once the shaking stops, avoid traveling over roads, bridges, ramps or overpasses that may have earthquake damage.

Earthquake Tips if You’re Trapped:

Stay still. Avoid moving around or stirring up dust.

Cover your mouth with a handkerchief or clothing.

Tap on a pipe or wall so rescuers will hear you. Try to keep from shouting unless there’s no other way to be heard since it may make you inhale hazardous dust.

Travel With An Emergency Kit

Because you don’t know how your business travel will be affected in an earthquake, it’s smart to travel with an emergency kit. It should include a battery-operated (or crank) radio or MP3 player with a radio to keep current during the emergency, a flashlight, travel snacks and water. Not only should you have water in your vehicle, but it doesn’t hurt to keep a couple of extra bottles handy in your hotel room.

 

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Posted in Tips for Workforce Travelers, Travel Safety | No Comments »

Find CLC Lodging at Booth 741 at Coal-Gen Conference

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

Is your company attending the Coal-Gen Conference & Exhibition now under way in Columbus, Ohio? If so, stop by CLC Lodging’s booth 741. We’ll be there through Aug. 18.

Our team will be happy to talk to you about how our lodging programs can save your company money on hotel costs, no matter whether your employees have 5, 50 or 500 room stays a month.

CLC Lodging negotiates deeply discounted rates at more than 10,000 hotels across North America, thanks to its volume purchasing power of 9 million room nights a year for clients.

For more than 30 years, we’ve specialized in serving companies with workforce travelers who typically stay in economy and mid-scale hotels. Our coast-to-coast network includes familiar brands and leading independents like Best Western, Super 8, Ramada, Holiday Inn, Hyatt Place, Red Roof Inn and more.

For small businesses, CLC Lodging gives you access to rates typically only available to larger companies.

For larger companies, CLC brings you a suite of workforce travel solutions that cut the time your staff spends arranging, tracking and supporting company lodging needs. Plus, CLC’s enhanced data and reporting gives you detailed visibility into your lodging spend.

 

Find out more at

 

 

 

www.clclodging.com.

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Posted in CLC Lodging Trade Show News | No Comments »

Boost Business Travel Savings As Gas Prices Go Down

Wednesday, August 17th, 2011

Saving on business travel just got a boost. The latest surveys show that gas prices fell 9 cents over the past three weeks. That means workforce travelers hitting the road frequently are paying less than they have in some time.
 
 The latest Lundberg survey, which canvases gasoline prices at 2,500 stations across the country, puts the average price of gas at $3.61 a gallon. For all those road warriors who worried about gas prices spiking to $4 a gallon and above, this is great news. 
When added to the 20-40% savings that CLC Lodging’s hotel savings card brings on hotel stays, company travel budgets are getting a big price break as summer winds down.

In fact, there’s some indication that gas prices may continue to go down. Slow economic growth in the U.S. and Europe could continue to impact the price of crude oil, held down by limited demand. That’s a trend that industry experts expect to continue through the month.

If your company crews, drivers, sales team or other employees are on the road, it’s costing you less for their travel right now.

Saving companies money on workforce travel is what CheckINN Direct is all about. Companies can sign up online or call to become members of the hotel savings card program.

With the CheckINN Card from CLC Lodging in hand, it’s quick and easy to cut your travel costs.

The card is accepted at more than 10,000 participating hotel locations across the U.S. and Canada. You can use it at Best Western, Holiday Inn, Super 8, Red Roof Inn, Ramada, Hyatt Place and more.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Sign up at

 
 
 

 

www.checkinncard.com.

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Healthy, Wealthy & Wise Hotel Tips for Business Travelers

Monday, August 8th, 2011

 
 

As a regular workforce traveler, are you interested in keeping fit when you’re on the road?

A recent Wall Street Journal story indicated that some hotels are taking notice. They’re also taking steps to ensure that it’s easy to get a workout when you’re on the road (almost as easy as saving 20-40% on hotel rooms with CheckINN Direct.)

One interesting example cited in the Aug. 7 story is that in-room exercise equipment is beginning to be a trend. That means you don’t have to head down the hall or to another floor to find the exercise room.

Instead, you can use equipment in your room.

The story cited a 2010 American Hotel & Lodging Association survey of 8,500 hotels nationwide. The survey found that 15% of mid-price lodging properties have the option for in-room exercise equipment. The percentage is slightly higher at upscale hotel chains (17%) and even higher at luxury hotels (21%).

Hilton Garden Inn offers its guest a Stay Fit kit, which can be “checked out,” much like a library book. It includes a stretch band and an abs ball. The chain also offers work-out videos through its On Demand programming, allowing you to work out on your own schedule.

Working out is one thing – but maybe you’re just as interested in having a healthy environment when you’re staying at a hotel.

Another trend from the survey is for “Pure” rooms, which have in-room purifiers, hypo-allergenic coverings for pillows and mattresses and get special allergen cleaning treatments. Currently, they’re available at more than 200 locations of familiar hotel chains nationwide for about $25 more per night, so don’t forget to ask.

And if you’re super-sensitive to smoke in your room, the FreshStay.com Website lists more than 5,000 hotels that are completely smoke-free. Those options include every Choice and Marriott hotel. The site easily can be checked by state.

Don’t forget to check your CheckINN Direct online directory to find the more than 10,000 participating locations where you can access deeply discounted hotel rates whenever you or your employees travel for business.

That keeps your company travel budget just as fit as you want to be.

 

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Higher Hotel Occupancy Means Higher Rates for Workforce Travelers

Sunday, August 7th, 2011

As this blog has indicated since Q4 2010, hotel rates are going up as demand and occupancy increases.

But if your small business hasn’t signed up yet for the Hotel Savings Card program from CLC Lodging, your travelers won’t be able to save 20-40 percent off hotels’ Lowest Published Rates.

Tapping into that level of savings is going to be more valuable than ever as hotel rates continue to rise.

The latest to affirm the trend is Business Travel News (BTN). It reported Aug. 4 that hotels had a solid Q2, which likely will mean tougher rate negotiations for companies for 2012.

Lodging industry experts at Smith Travel Research indicated that overall hotel rates in the U.S. increased by 3.5 percent in Q2. Occupancy is up 4.5 percent from a year ago, hitting 63.4 percent.

Economy and midscale hotels hiked their rates during Q2, BTN reported. For companies with workforce travelers, that means you’re going to be paying higher prices at the front desk.

If your company doesn’t have the significant annual room volume that allows you to negotiate discounted rates, expect your travel budget to take a hit. Front desk “deals” or last-minute bargains are likely to disappear.

Top hotel chains like Marriott, Hyatt and Starwood told BTN that corporate demand was strong during the second quarter. In fact, Marriott President and COO Arne Sorenson predicted “healthy rate growth.”

Reinforcing that prediction: During Q2, Marriott’s corporate transient occupancy demand returned to peak levels not seen for four years.

Starwood execs similarly are expecting to get higher rates from company travelers, particularly since they’re seeing a strong 70 per cent occupancy across many of their brands.

BTN said Choice Hotel rates were up 2 percent overall when compared to a year ago, ranging between 1-5 percent in all Choice brands. Wyndham increased its average daily rates 3.8 percent year over year, including its midprice Wingate and Ramada brands.

Don’t let hotel rate increases sink your travel budget. CLC Lodging’s Hotel Savings Card program, CheckINN Direct, allows your company to take advantage of CLC’s buying power.

Because its clients book 9M room nights annually, CLC can leverage that volume to negotiate deeply discounted rates at more than 10,000 economy and midscale hotels across the U.S.

Your employees can save at familiar brands like Hampton Inn, Super 8, Best Western, Holiday Inn, Ramada, Red Room Inn, Hyatt Place and more.

Put CLC Lodging’s CheckINN Card in your employees’ hands by signing up today.

 

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How to Find the Best Hotel Rate for Business Travelers

Monday, August 1st, 2011

CheckINN Direct has rates 20-40% off lowest published rates 
 
 

If you’re a travel administrator making hotel arrangements for your company travelers, maybe you wish the “Easy Button” featured in TV ads for an office supply chain could be a reality.

The hotel savings card offered in CLC Lodging’s CheckINN Direct program just might be the next best thing, particularly if you typically book your traveling crews, drivers, installers, field sales reps and others in economy and mid-scale hotels.

Once you put the CheckINN Card in your company traveler’s hands, your business immediately gains access to the deeply discounted hotel and motel rates typically reserved for large companies. CheckINN Direct rates are always 20-40% off hotels’ lowest published rates.

You are assured you’re getting the lowest possible rate, thanks to CheckINN Direct’s Lowest Rate Guarantee. If you find a lower qualifying rate, we pay you the difference and give you a $30 credit to apply to your company’s next CheckINN Direct stay.

Your employees no longer have to pay for their hotel rooms with a personal or company credit card. They don’t have to carry per diem cash to cover the cost of lodging. They just show the card at check-in, the hotel bills CLC Lodging, and we bill the credit card your company registers with the program at sign-up.

Your life gets a lot easier, too. CheckINN Direct’s online hotel directory gives you instant access to more than 10,000 hotels across the U.S. and Canada that accept the CheckINN Card. That includes popular brands like Super 8, Best Western, Holiday Inn, Hyatt Place, Ramada and Comfort Inn. No more calling around or checking a lot of different sites trying to find a hotel at a good price.

Plus, you can track your company’s lodging stays – and what you paid – because every lodging invoice is posted to your company’s online CheckINN Direct account. A statement is e-mailed to you every time your credit card is billed for a stay.

Maybe it isn’t a big red “Easy Button,” but the hotel savings card from CLC Lodging puts hotel and motel discounts in easy reach for you and your company. It doesn’t matter if your business travel requires 5 or 50 or more stays a month.

No need to wait. If you sign up now, your employees literally can start saving on hotel stays tonight.

 

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Posted in CLC Hotels For Workforce Travelers, CLC Workforce Lodging, Tips for Workforce Travelers | No Comments »