Real time booking made a reality by Mercator

It was only a matter of time before someone thought of teaming Micros-Fidelio up with the wonders of the worldwide web to enhance real time bookings for hotels. Mercator, the IT solutions arm of the Emirates Group, launched the Destination Accommodation Exchange (Daex), a real-time hotel booking system, at ATM last month, with the system being rolled out to hotels across Dubai from the beginning of this month.

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By  Sarah Campbell Published  June 11, 2006

It was only a matter of time before someone thought of teaming Micros-Fidelio up with the wonders of the worldwide web to enhance real time bookings for hotels. Mercator, the IT solutions arm of the Emirates Group, launched the Destination Accommodation Exchange (Daex), a real-time hotel booking system, at ATM last month, with the system being rolled out to hotels across Dubai from the beginning of this month. The idea is a simple one: the Daex software links the travel agent’s booking request direct to the hotel’s PMS system providing virtually instantaneous booking confirmations and real-time management of hotel inventory. Gone are the days of fax bookings and confirmations, as the hotel industry finally gets automated. “Daex makes it easier for travel agents to book accommodation in Dubai, enabling agents and reservations staff to work smarter. The system can confirm the booking at internet speed, as it talks direct to the PMS system,” Simon Lewis, manager, eVentures Group, told Hotelier Middle East. “It also provides hotels with a single point to upload rates information, through the epicentre of their business — the PMS.” Designed by Emirates’ Mercator and developed jointly with Micros-Fidelio, the Daex system utilises the functionality of Micros-Fidelio’s myFidelio.net internet-based booking system and its hotel PMS solutions, which are used by the majority of all five-star and four-star hotels in Dubai. To increase functionality and service Daex has been combined with a unique Hotel Information Management System (HIMS), which is compliant with Open Travel Alliance standards. This web-based system standardises property information through the use of consistent design and content formats. Hotels are able to upload information on their properties, including images, all of which can be edited and updated online, meaning that agents are always able to access the latest information. At present, there are 36 five-star and 27 four-star properties in Dubai piloting the system, but Lewis is confident Daex will prove a success. “After two years of research, we are confident we understand how a hotel works. Agents and hotels are brought together in Daex, which can make a booking every five seconds; that’s 18,000 potential bookings a day,” he points out. For the agents, access to Daex is free, while hotels pay a booking charge. “We are rate agnostic,” Lewis said. “We charge US $1.50 per booking, for up to 99 rooms, regardless of stay and rate.” Naturally, as part of Emirates Group, Lewis is already eyeing possible links with the aviation industry. “Given that Daex is internet based, there are exciting opportunities to provide it on board aircraft where customers can book their room in the air and be met on the ground. This is an exciting concept still in its infancy and one which will certainly add value to the airline product of the future,” said Lewis.

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