Bye-bye POS; hello payments automation

Sponsored by Roomcloud

All ecommerce players continue to look at ways to simplify processes and many continue to improve workflows which are already very efficient.

The tourism industry is part of this movement – all those who manage hotels, bed and breakfasts, apartments and residences are constantly looking for ways to run their business more successfully.

One area of focus is the automation of payments.

PMSs, channel managers and booking engines have helped to solve problems related to reservations and operations, the new automation of payments adds another layer of efficiency to these processes.

Traditional tools

Traditional tools for debiting customer’s credit cards, generically named POS (point of sale), can be quite restrictive not only in terms of the cost of commission but also for always needing a person physically present to process the transaction.

This procedure has worked adequately in the past but today the market is more demanding – receiving the reservation and processing the payment manually is no longer the ideal solution.

The industry needs a more modern solution, which is able to better manage a complex scenario in which the customer makes a reservation and provides their card data to the channel manager who receives the reservation, and then passes it to the PMS.

Platform requirements

The payment platform must be able to automate a variety of transactional models, including the debit process, in all of the following types of cases:

Non refundable booking​, non-returnable or unchangeable and non-cancellable: which allows for an immediate withdrawal.

Advanced payment, deposit or bond: which allows for a levy or deduction, even immediately, of a specified percentage or a specific number of nights.

No-show and/or penalty​: which is confirmed when the client does not arrive at the hotel.  Even if the hotel was able to resell the room to another guest, a penalty could still be charged. The amount of the penalty varies by property or chain, but normally it is equal to the amount of the first night (there is no reduction if the reservation is only one night) or the entire stay in the case of promotional rates that are particularly advantageous.

The penalty for the no-show, as well as for cancellations beyond the foreseen (resulting in a no-show for the hotel), is taken from the credit card on the date of the check-in or according to the conditions established for cancellation.

Pre-authorization​: which can already be done at the time of the reservation, as well as during the check-in. An amount is blocked on the credit card, which may be equal to the penalty in case of no-show (if the pre-authorization is made at the time of booking) or equal to the entire stay (if made during check-in ) to ensure there is sufficient funds on the card to make the payment. For banking procedures there is a deadline of 2 to 7 business days for pre-authorized sums to be available on the card again.

Payment at check-out​: Upon departure, it is necessary to check the validity of the credit card and proceed with the payment of the amount due.

The growing complexity

From the examples above, we can see the increasing complexity of around payments. And as payments become part of revenue management, the complexity deepens. However, improvements in the payment tech landscape are helping to address that complexity and make processes simpler.

RoomCloud offers a solution based on Stripe, the popular payment system that can accept virtually every type of credit card and process payments in real time.

For more details and to request a demo, click here.

This article from Roomcloud appears as part of the tnooz sponsored content initiative.

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About the Writer :: Sponsored Content

This is the byline under which we publish articles that are part of our sponsored content initiative. Our sponsored content is produced in collaboration with industry partners. The views expressed do not necessarily reflect or represent the views of tnooz, its writers, or partners.



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