While many hotels and conference centers around the world have leisure-travel industry recognized ratings, many more lack metrics for the business travel sector.
The new program, ACTE-BCHA (Business Conference Hotel Accreditation), guides corporate travel buyers in selecting the most appropriate business-quality accommodations for their internal clients.
“More than 70 percent of hotels around the world are independently owned and operated. Even hotels that are part of a franchise system may not meet brand standards. This program will identify facilities that meet business travellers’ needs,” said Vadim Zelenski, CEO of ACTE-BCHA.
“There are all sorts of ratings out there--diamond ratings and star ratings and TripAdvisor's crowdsourcing. But they cater to leisure travellers, who are most interested in whether a venue is kid-friendly, offers perks or packages, or is close to local attractions. Business travellers, on the other hand, want well-stocked business centers, safes for laptops, conference centers, room service and a fitness center, along with a secure environment,'' said Greeley Koch, Executive Director of ACTE Global and Head of Supervisory Board, ACTE-BCHA. “That's what this new rating system seeks to standardise.”
ACTE-BCHA plans to accredit more than 10,000 hotels globally by 2020. Facilities will pay an annual membership fee, and compliance will be verified by independent monitors. Among the first participants in the program, Dubai-based DNATA has been selected to inspect properties in the United Arab Emirates and the Middle East, effective September 2017. The program will rate other regions as it identifies and adds inspection partners.
“Business travellers want safe and productive experiences when they're on the road—no matter where they travel. This new collaboration will help ensure they get exactly what they expect when they're in the Middle East,” said Savio Vaz, DNATA's Vice President Government & Corporate Travel.
Winfried Barczaitis, a travel industry expert with more than 40 years in the business, has been named ACTE-BCHA’s chief operating officer. He will be based in Bad Honnef, Germany.