Customers, Industry, Product, Featured  |  7 December 2021  |  Martin Kucera  |  3 minute read

Rethinking spaces with Mews: parking

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For a property to fully maximize its revenue, you need to utilize its space in the most efficient way. This sounds simple, but historically it hasn’t been. For a long time it was too complicated to manage multiple space types all in one place; the technology wasn’t ready and hotels that offered additional space types like meeting rooms or parking spots had to manage them in separate systems, hack their existing platform, or even keep track via humble pen and paper. 

To this we say: no more.  

Our project to reimagine the future of guest experiences revolves around helping hoteliers to utilize and monetize space and time. We know this sounds a little grand, so this article focuses on a single example that’s simple but surprisingly powerful: parking spaces.  

 

Why focus on parking spaces?

Even before Covid-19, parking spots would have been a great place to begin. But the change in habits brought about by the pandemic cemented the importance of making the most from your parking. 

In the UK alone, this summer saw an estimated 29 million domestic holidays taken by drivers, as the additional stress and uncertainty of traveling abroad put many holidaymakers off air travel and public transport. The car rental market is another good indicator, with a ‘car rental apocalypse’ brought about by this surge in demand for road travel. In short, lots of people are driving, which means that lots of people need parking. 

If your property is lucky enough to have some of these spaces, you’re sitting on an excellent revenue source. You no doubt know this already. But wouldn’t it be cool if you could manage these spaces directly in your hospitality cloud, without any need for system hacks? You can see where we’re going with this... 

 

How parking works with Mews

Parking spots are one of the new space types we’ve recently added to our system. That means you can manage these spaces just like you do with rooms or beds, from directly within the Mews platform. You can offer them for rental on a daily or an overnight basis, ensuring you and your guests have flexibility when it comes to booking. 

To get these spaces into your system, you just need to create a new space category – in this instance, ‘Parking space’ – in Mews Operations. Once you’ve done that, you simply add as many spaces as you want to offer, just as you would for rooms or beds.  

You’re now able to reserve multiple services in the same reservation group in Mews Operations (notice the "Add another reservation" button on the new reservation screen) or build a dedicated booking engine for parking. The bundling of multiple services in a single reservation flow is coming to the booking engine in the near future. 

 
A reservation screen in Mews with a hotel room and parking spot in the same booking. 

It’s also possible to broaden your revenue stream by opening up your parking spots to non-guests. Because you’re using a dedicated parking booking engine on your website, anyone in the area can secure a spot for the day, and you’re able to vary the pricing between guests and non-guests. Pro tip: if you want to drive extra demand for non-guests, you can look into the numerous parking spot websites (such as JustPark in the UK) and get your spaces listed on there. 

 

The benefits of managing parking with Mews

Why bother setting up parking spots with Mews? You’ve already got a system that (kind of) works, so is it really worth the effort? Yes. Yes, it is. Here are a handful of reasons why: 

  • Eliminate paper and Excel spreadsheets and manage your resources in a single system 
  • Maximize revenue and charge customers directly and immediately through Mews Payments 
  • Improve the guest experience by letting them book accommodation and parking together 
  • Manage bookings more easily with multiple services under a single reservation group 
  • Get proper parking functionality including rate management, reporting, and customer booking engines 
  • Access new customer segments such as anyone working or living in your neighborhood 

 

Parking success stories

Despite being a new service, 14 properties are already using parking with Mews – and with great success.

Hotel Aazaert is a Belgian property that’s seeing the benefits. They offer 58 parking spaces as well as six meeting rooms, also directly through the Mews platform. Although their summer parking occupancy was relatively low at 45%, these spaces still contributed a lot to their revenue. Between May and August they generated an extra €39,000. And thanks to the low maintenance costs, the vast majority of this sum is pure profit. 

“Integrating parking into the PMS has made a big difference for us,” said Loots Frederic, Director of WP Hotels. “We can easily see the impact it’s having by looking at the report, and it saves us lots of time by not having to do any manual entries. Ultimately, this means we can focus on giving guests an even better experience.” 

 

Summing up 

As we said at the top of the article, parking is only the beginning. But it’s a good beginning. It’s an easy way to simplify what’s typically a fiddly, manual process, and generate more revenue at the same time. And if you have spaces for bikes, there’s no reason why you couldn’t use our parking functionality for that too. 

This is the first in our Rethinking Spaces series – keep an eye out over the coming weeks and see how you can transform meeting space bookings, long stay options, and more.

 

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Martin Kucera | 7 December 2021

Martin brings his wealth of product management experience to lead one of Mews' most innovative new offerings – Project Spacetime – which focuses on introducing new space types and time units.

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