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Packages vs. Rate Types with Items: When to Use which

SituationPackageItemRate Type
When to use a Package, Item, or Rate Type?
You have multiple items in your package, but the items are taxed differently.
  
You would like to specify a lead time before a package can be added.  
You don't want to change the price /NIGHT that the customer sees when searching for a room.  
You would like the customer to have the ability to add multiple packages to their bill. 
You have one or more items in your package, but they are all taxed the same. 
You need to show each line item in the bill for the customer to see.  
You would like to qualify the package with a promo or coupon code.  
You would like to change the price of rooms that are associated with the package.  
You need to be able to add an item per day, effectively changing the item quantity based on the length of their stay.  
You need to be able to add an item per guest, effectively changing the item quantity based on the number of guests.

What are Packages in ThinkReservations?

ThinkReservations has a feature called "Packages," which is a group or collection of two or more items. Packages can be easily added to a bill by a staff member in the bill by clicking the add icon  inside the bill. Below is what you and your staff see in the bill after a package has been added.

Packages can be offered to your guests online as a single packaged item in the ThinkReservations booking engine. The system asks: Would you like to add any of the following? Below is an example of what your prospective guests see in the online Booking Engine after they have selected a room.
A Package and an Item look identical to the guest.

 

What is a Rate Type with Items attached?

The answer is a "Room Package". If you want to attach items to a room automatically then you want a rate type. You can add one or more items to the rate type creating a package that automatically includes the room. Below is what you see when editing a rate type. The example below has four items associated with it, making it a room package.

The price of the Rate Type Package is always shown per night to the guest. For example, a $200 room with a $100 package will show $300/NIGHT for guests searching for one night. However, it will show as only $225/NIGHT for guests searching for four nights. Below is what the guests see when searching for availability in the booking engine on your website. This example shows three possible rate types for the customer to choose from.

How are they similar?

  • The items that are in a package and the items attached to a rate type are shown to the customer as only one line item - the package name and the package price.
  • All items will be taxed the appropriate amount.
  • Although applied differently, similar restrictions can be applied to both a package and a rate type:
    • Minimum Nights required
    • Maximum Nights required
    • Eligible Rooms
    • Eligible Dates

 

How are they different?

  • Guests pick the rate type when selecting the room. Instead of choosing your "Best Available Rate" or equivalent, they will be able to choose your Rate Type Package as the first step when choosing a room.
  • Guests that want to add a "Package" to their room will be shown a list of items and packages that you have selected to upsell -- after they have added a room to their reservation.
  • You can use a coupon code to qualify a guest into a rate type.
  • You can change the base price of the room with a rate type.
  • You can specify the frequency that an item is applied to the bill based on the guest's length of stay in a rate type (Example: Dinner every night of their stay, but only one bottle of wine.)
  • You can specify a lead time for an item or package (Example: You must book this package at least five days in advance.)
  • You can allow guests to add more than one package to their room.
S
Sean is the author of this solution article.

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