Your company not only depends on bookings to survive, it also depends on people showing up for your tours or activities and paying for those bookings. No-shows are a hassle, especially when your company's revenue depends on it, but with our five suggestions you can make an effort to encourage attendance and look forward to a great turnout.
1. Use a booking system that allows you to send automated confirmation emails
Having an online booking system with a live inventory allows customers to select the best time slot available for them and book their tours instantly. With a software provider like TrekkSoft, you can also send out automated confirmation emails to customers and encourage them to add a reminder of the tour or activity into their personal calendars.
2. Follow up on those bookings
It's also advisable to send out a follow up email or text a day before the scheduled tour or activity to serve as another reminder. Remember to include the date, time, meeting point and other relevant information such as a map with directions to your location, important things to bring, dress code and so on.
3. Implement a cancellation policy
You need to set strict cancellation guidelines in the event of bad weather and make sure that these are known to your customers. For example, you could establish that changes and cancellations can be made up to two days before the tour with no penalty fee charged. To encourage attendance, customers who make changes or cancel their bookings after that time could lose part of their deposit or down payment.
Above all, make sure that your policies are clear and that they are enforced. Your revenue depends on customers showing up at their booked date and time, after all!
4. Ask for a deposit
Asking for a deposit or down payment is a great way to reduce no-shows as it helps customers to feel invested in the tour and not want it to go to waste. Using an online payment system is a great way to implement this, and with TrekkSoft you can create your own terms and conditions.
5. Review no-show occurrences
Look at data from the past three months to calculate your no-show rate based on day of the week and the type of tour or activity. There might just be days when business is slow, or tours just aren't performing as well as you'd hope.
With this new insight, you can tweak your tour and activity inventory and make scheduling changes accordingly.
Based on your experience, what else can tour and activity operators consider to reduce no-shows?
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Published by Nicole Kow
Having graduated from the UK, Nicole travelled around Europe before joining TrekkSoft's marketing team. She is now based in KL and regularly blogs about her travels at Next Train Out.