American Hotel & Lodging Association

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The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) recently launched an awareness campaign entitled “Search Smarter”  aimed at helping travelers avoid lost reservations, additional fees, and ruined vacations.

Americans make 500 online hotel bookings every 60 seconds, but evidence from new, extensive polling data from the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) suggests they’re not getting the deal they think they are. The two culprits are (1) online booking scams and (2) misleading marketing messages perpetrated by online travel agencies and their third-party affiliates.

Additional research reveals that online scams made through fraudulent sites are on the rise, resulting in 55 million “bad” bookings of this type each year, costing consumers $3.9 billion.  In 2015, just 6% of travelers reported booking on what they believed was a hotel’s official website, only to find they had booked on a fraudulent site not affiliated with the hotel. Just two years later, the number of travelers who have experienced this has nearly quadrupled to 22%. • Seniors in particular have major concerns about the lack of transparency in online booking – many of which are due to bad experiences. 1 in 10 consumers 65 or older say they have accidentally booked with a fake site when intending to book directly with a hotel.

AHLA Position

Transparency, consumer choice, and guest satisfaction are at the core of the hotel industry’s business model. AHLA is raising awareness among consumers, Congress, and federal agencies to make sure guests have all the necessary information prior to booking their hotel reservations. With so many ways to book a reservation, it’s important to make sure consumers understand how to slow down, search smarter and make the best decisions throughout the booking process for themselves and their families. Consumers should know what to look for before they book a hotel reservation.

Visit https://ahla.com/SearchSmarter to learn more about the “Search Smarter” campaign.

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The AHLA Stars of the Industry awards program was created more than 45 years ago to recognize outstanding accomplishments in the lodging industry. While the categories have evolved over the years, the concept is still the same — to honor lodging employees and properties that best symbolize the quality service of the industry. They want to hear your story!

The AHLA  is now accepting nominations for their STARS of the member companies, properties, and employees are eligible to submit an entry. Nonmembers will not be considered. Not sure if your property is an AH&LA member? Just reach out to AHLA Member Services at membership@ahla.com or (202) 289-3100.

Specific award categories are given based on property size. Size distinctions are small property(250 rooms or less) or large property (250 rooms or more). Important points to know about nominations:

  • Nominees can be either self or peer-nominated.
  • Support documentation may not exceed 10 pages. Videos may not exceed 3 minutes.
  • Incomplete entries will not be considered.

This year’s Stars of the Industry awards highlight the best employees from five coveted categories.

  • North Star Award: Lodging Employee of the Year 
  • General Manager of the Year 
    • Small property (250 rooms or less)
    • Large property (250 rooms or more)
  • Stevan Porter Emerging Hospitality Leader of the Year 
  • Paving the Way Award: Women In Lodging 
  • Innovation of the Year
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The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) recently announced a new webinar:

Bed Bugs: Separating Fact from Fiction
Tuesday, Sept 28, 2010
1:00- 2:30 pm CDT

From AH&LA:

Bed bugs have received front page placement all summer, leaving a multitude of guests who often confuse facts with myths about this pest.

Learn how to more proactively manage bed bug infestations, the legal pitfalls inherent in today’s litigious society, and how to effectively address the many misconceptions of your guests.

Panelists include:

  • Stuart Mitchell, DO, PhD, MPH, BCE, noted pest management expert, speaker, and scientist representing the National Pest Management Association
  • Christian Hardigree, an attorney, Parnell & Associates
  • Wes Tyler, general manager, Chancellor Hotel on Union Square in San Francisco
  • Moderator: Bob Sears, director of life safety, Winegardner & Hammons, Inc.

All participants also eligible to receive a 20% discount on AHLEI’s Bed Bugs: Facts and Prevention DVD!

Cost is $99 for AH&LA members or $199 for non-members

Not sure if you’re a member, or need assistance with your AH&LA member ID? Please contact the WH&LA office for assistance.

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Click on the image above for more information from the AH&LA Educational Institute.

Need help with your AH&LA ID Number or not sure if you’re an AH&LA Member? Contact Denise in the WH&LA office for assistance.

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The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) has the following information available on their site:

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) is planning an initiative specifically targeting the lodging industry for audits by the department’s Wage and Hour Division.

DOL has labeled the lodging industry as a “high-risk industry,” as it claims violations of federal wage and hour laws are likely to occur. The department has also chosen to consider employees in the lodging industry as “vulnerable workers.” As a result, you can expect a DOL audit, covering all your employees.

Also included on their page you’ll find links to:

As a Partner State of the AH&LA, WH&LA members with 51+ rooms automatically have dual membership in AH&LA.  For properties with less than 51 rooms, click on over to see the benefits of joining the AH&LA as well as WH&LA.

Not a WH&LA member? Check out what you’re missing at JoinWHLA.com!

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Direct from the AH&LA Web site:

Labor Department Targeting Hotels for Audits: Be Prepared
Wednesday, July 28
2:00-3:30 p.m. (EDT) [1:00-2:30 CDT]

Free for AH&LA members, $99 for non-members

Newly enacted regulatory strategies by the federal government are targeting hotels and their employees, which could lead to increased federal enforcement actions, class and collective action lawsuits, and union organizing should the industry not live up to these new standards.

Learn how to comply and make sense of the recently-announced “Plan/Prevent/Protect” regulatory and enforcement initiatives by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) during this practical Webinar.   Topics include new challenges and best practices around:

  • How your property will be impacted by increased enforcement
  • H-2B seasonal visa holders
  • Safety and health initiatives, including ergonomics
  • OFCCP audits
  • Wage and hour investigations, including exempt status and independent contractor classification

Presented by national law firm Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak and Stewart, P.C., you’ll hear from a panel of labor attorneys who work with AH&LA members on an ongoing basis and can answer your toughest questions.

To protect your property and your employees, you need to know and play by the rules.

Register online or by downloading this form.  Please direct any questions to Tara Allen at tallen@ahla.com or (202) 289-3171.

This Webinar is free for AH&LA members and $99 for nonmembers.  To learn more about membership, click here.

Need help with your AH&LA member ID, or not sure if you’re an AH&LA member? Please contact Denise in the WH&LA office at service@wisconsinlodging.org or (262)782-2851.

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Click on the image above for more information from the AH&LA Educational Institute.

Need help with your AH&LA ID Number or not sure if you’re an AH&LA Member? Contact Denise in the WH&LA office for assistance.

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Direct from the AH&LA Web site:

Your Website: Drive Traffic, Drive Profits in an OTC World
Wednesday, June 30
2:00-3:30 p.m. (EDT) [1:00-2:30 CDT]

As Internet booking becomes more dominant in obtaining reservations, learn how to drive more traffic directly to your Website and realize more revenue – without relying on online travel companies (OTC).

You’ll hear from Capitol Hill insider Shawn McBurney, AH&LA senior vice president of governmental affairs, about how legislation under consideration by Congress may place you in jeopardy of massive tax increases for reservations not made directly through your site. This online booking tax issue is heating up, so learn how to put measures in place that will protect your bottom line now and in the future, whatever may happen.

Consider the second part of this Webinar your e-marketing strategy session.  Presented by TIG Global, leaders in online marketing, Brian Fitzgerald, director of SEO and social media, and Rob Mulcahy, search engine marketing manager, will discuss best practices for reducing reliance on third-party intermediaries (TPIs) and driving revenue direct to your Website, including:

Rate Parity: The importance of ensuring your lowest rate is as low as the OTC.

Search Engine Optimization: The value of making yourself visible to the search engines and the tactics to achieve success in ranking above OTCs.

Pay-Per-Click Advertising: Essential items to include in your PPC ad copy and the significance of each element.

Local Search:  How to capture more search result real estate by optimizing Local Search.

You’ll also hear a case study from a hotel that has successfully been able to implement these elements to create a seamless experience for the online traveler.

Cost: $49 for AH&LA members; $99 for nonmembers

Registration

Click here to register online.  Once your registration is processed, you will receive an email with instructions on how to obtain your personalized participation login for the Webinar from TIG Global.  Be sure to complete all the required fields in order to receive the link to access the Webinar.

If you prefer to download this form and fax it in to the number provided, you will also receive an instructional email once your registration is processed.

Cancellation Policy: A full refund will be issued for your registration fee only if written notice of cancellation is received five (5) business days prior to the date of the webinar session.  No refunds will be issued for cancellation requests received less than five (5) business days prior to the date of the program.  Substitution of registrants are permitted.

Please direct any questions to Tara Allen at tallen@ahla.com or (202) 289-3171.

Need help with your AH&LA member ID, or not sure if you’re an AH&LA member? Please contact Denise in the WH&LA office at service@wisconsinlodging.org or (262)782-2851.

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CompetitiveEdgeStaff turnover.  It happens in the hospitality industry, and with turnover comes the need for continuous, high quality, affordable training options.  Did you know the Wisconsin Innkeepers Association (WIA) and the Educational Institute of AH&LA have teamed up to provide WIA members access to a free Resource Lending Library?

WIA members can check out a variety of materials such as the following for only a $5 shipping/ handling fee:

  • Competitive Edge: Sales Strategies for Small Properties (video)
  • Front Office Quality Service: Exceeding Guest Expectations (workbook)
  • Managing Housekeeping Operations (video)
  • Understanding Hospitality Law (text)
  • Security: Key Control & Guest Privacy (video)

For more information about the Lending Library or to view the full list of available resources, please contact Pamela in the WIA office.

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Click on the image above for more information from the AH&LA Educational Institute.

Need help with your AH&LA ID Number or not sure if you’re an AH&LA Member?  Contact Denise in the WIA office for assistance.

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