All Room Type and Rate Plan allocations to Agent Channels are listed and managed in SETUP | RELATIONSHIPS | AGENT RELATIONSHIPS. The default screen of Agent Relationships displays the details of your Agent Channels: Agent ID, Agent Type, Agent Name, Number of Rooms Allocated, Commission percentage and Rate Loading percentage.
Examples of Agents Channels include: your website, promotional codes, Wholesale Agents, Booking.com, Expedia, Trip Advisor, GDS, Booking.com and other online travel agents. To see the contact details of each Agent, click the Agent ID.
Because you can setup and manage a unique set of Room allocations and Rate Plans to each Agent Channel, we refer to this as an Agent Relationship. There are three general types of Agents, each of which can have multiple channels depending on the online distribution channels you choose to set up. Some Agents are set up by BookingCenter (Master Agents), some are created by you (MyPMS Agents) and some are added automatically after you have signed up for an OTA contract Rate program (Net Rate Agents).
Agent Types (See Agent Types for more details)
- Master Agents: These agents control the availability and rates to your basic channels: They must have allocations in order to function properly.
- PMS Agents: These are "special" agents that you have set up in the My Agents area. This Agent is also used to set up Promotional Codes.
- Net Rate Agents: These agents will only be visible if you have signed up for a Contract Program with a major OTA
Agents are both traditional 'Travel Agents' and 'Channels' of distribution. This reduces confusion and allows one to think of an 'agent' as a business partner who sells rooms at unique prices and/or allocations. This area allows you to print Agent reports, view an agent's booking history, or make payments to the Agent.
You can also publish your rooms at special 'agent prices' and assign them a percentage (%) of any of your room inventory.
For example: You might choose to 'load' (increase) your default rates by 10% to a specific Agent, and only sell the agent 40% of a specific Room Type. When the Agent went to their special web address, they would see 10% higher prices and only 40% of the available rooms.
When you click on Agent Relationships, a list with all of your Agent Channels is displayed with the following information.
BookingCenter hosts a web service for Agents who have allocated Rooms and Rates to login, make bookings, and view their bookings & potential commissions they will be owed when Bookings checkout, according to their commission plan. Only customers who have specifically been granted access to the Agents Area can use this part of the system. To make Agents and allocate the rooms and rates you wish to these Agents, follow the instructions from Agent Relationships and Agent Allocations.
Communicating Online Bookings to Agents
An Agent can be notified when an online booking occurs for a Unit when they make an online booking via the Agents Area. To do this, one must:
- Have made Room and rate allocations to the specific Agent in question as explained at: Agent Relationships and Agent Allocations.
- Make sure the option: Send Letter? for the Agent is set to YES .
- Make sure the Agent has either an email entered (for sending email Letter) or mobile phone (for sending SMS) in their specific Agent record.
- Assign a Default Letter and/or SMS for Agents. Once a default Letter(s) is assigned, an online booking will trigger an Agent Email and/or SMS to the Agent making the online booking via the Agents Area if steps 1 and 2 above were followed for that specific Agent.
- Have the Agent login and make a booking.