Cream of the Crop

July 22 2009 by Chris McGinnis
Comments (9)

creamofthecrop_bw2.jpgOver the last few months, I've been working with Best Western on a project aimed at identifying trends, opinions and habits among its very best customers.

We wrangled this group together by emailing invitations to Best Western Rewards members who have spent more than 250 nights with the chain in the last five years. Nearly 400 members agreed to participate in monthly surveys and other forms of outreach and research.

We just completed our first survey which illustrates just who Best Western's top customers really are. To me, this group represents the core of the North American business traveler population-- entrepreneurs or those employed by small- or medium-sized companies.... out there on the road, in their cars in small towns and rural areas, probably eating alone and spending nights in roadside hotels. They always keep a keen eye on saving money, getting the job done and then getting home.

Who are Best Westerns best customers? Here are some top-line survey results:

Bargain Seekers: Three-quarters of them spend less than $100 per night, on average, at hotels. Most of them spend between $75 and $100. (To me, this means they seek out bargains wherever they can, given the average North American hotel rate is now about $100.)

Real Road Warriors: Sixty three percent say that less than 10 percent of their business trips over the last year involved air travel. (That should come as a big surprise to folks who think business travelers are always on planes.)

Hotel Junkies: Forty four percent spend between 11 and 20 nights at hotels each month. A whopping 29 percent sleep on a hotel pillow between 21 and 31 nights per month. (And 62 percent choose Best Western 75 to 100 percent of the time, bless 'em!)

Small is Good: Half of this group is employed by small/medium-sized businesses (or are self-employed). Forty four percent are from small- or medium-sized towns or cities. And what's the typical destination of their trips? You guessed it: 62 percent say they travel to mostly small/medium sized towns or rural areas.

Categories : Road Warriors

3 TrackBacks

Listed below are links to blogs that reference this entry

  1. The Great, Unmanaged Masses from You Must Be Trippin' on August 19, 2009 3:13 PM
  2. Leading The Charge Out of Economic Doldrums from You Must Be Trippin' on August 26, 2009 11:51 AM
  3. For Those Who Drive More Than Fly from You Must Be Trippin' on September 9, 2009 3:40 PM


By Steve on July 29, 2009 11:12 PM

The key things for me are pretty simple, WI FI or hardwired in the room.

A shower head that works for tall people.

B level TV channels, history - discovery - sports - news - weather. Movies or games do not interest me.

Biz center on the property.

Pool and hot tub are a nice bonus, real local map on the wall and secure parking areas.

By Charles on July 30, 2009 11:29 AM

I agree with By Steve on July 29, 2009 11:12 PM.

Why can't Best Western establish a business class membership for us who spend a large amount of time at Best Western motels? With a special registration phone number that I could call to make a reservation and be assured of receiving a rate that is consistent year around and does not fluctuate with the tourist season.

There are areas of the country I refuse to travel to during tourist season because of the excessive rate the motel wants to charge me, a repeat customer.

By Alan on July 30, 2009 6:51 PM

I am 100% with Steve on this one. I would add good quality towels in the room makes it feel more like I am welcome there.

By Greg Lueth on July 31, 2009 11:34 AM

Not all of the Best Westerns have easy acess 110 outlets to hook up your computer .

Also I have to say it ---Hampton Inns there beds are great you should look into those.

By Mike on July 31, 2009 4:57 PM

I agree with the 110 outlet issue, a $2.99 power stip in the room would be helpful! Some BW now offer 24 hours pools with no kids after 10 pm! Woo Woo!!! Reservations? Why bother unless it's a tourist town? I can usually get a better rate on a walk-in. Some BW in small towns charge way too much! Yreka and Redding CA are way to expensive. I usually end up at the Super 8 or Travelodge for almost 1/2!

By steve on August 6, 2009 8:14 AM

I travel usually with a group of co-workers with as many as 15 of us staying at the same BW. However we have noticed that depending on how our reservations are made i.e. calling property directly or on BW website there can be as much as a 10 to 15 dollar a night differece for the same type room. We average at least 60 nights or better a year. Should we be able to get the same rate regardless?

By BW InnsiderAuthor Profile Page on August 6, 2009 10:56 AM

Thanks for all of your feedback.

Charles, we appreciate the suggestions and will take your comments to our loyalty program team for consideration.

By dolly charest on June 17, 2010 2:56 PM

I get very disturbed on your contest every time I try to apply your site will not accept it. we get info on my email always. they do me no good if i cannt apply

By Adelaide on June 23, 2011 11:29 AM

Kudos to you! I hadn't thoguht of that!

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