A direct hotel billing payment solution for travel management companies aims to cut the estimated annual $1.5 billion cost of manual payment handling and reconciliation across the industry.
TMCs are being offered access to Virtual Account Numbers (VANs) via an integrated hotel direct billing solution that automatically relays payment instructions and data to the hotel.
The solution, developed by travel payments firm eNett International and technology firm Cornerstone Information Systems, is available via the Travelport Travel Commerce Platform, as well as other GDSs, and does not require any change to existing back-end systems.
VANs are automatically generated MasterCard numbers for supplier payments and can include payment parameters such as amount, currency, date and merchant, making it a highly secure way to pay or be paid.
By using VANs, TMCs no longer have to use a traveller’s personal or corporate credit card, saving processing time while improving reconciliation, usage, and spend control.
VANs also help travel managers provide greater control over their payments by automatically linking these payments to corporate policy and eliminating unapproved charges.
Real-time reconciliation connected to Cornerstone’s expense reporting tool cuts time spent by business travellers on reporting processes.
Anthony Hynes, chief executive and managing director of eNett, said: “We developed eNett VANs specifically to address the inefficiencies of travel payments, making innovative and integrated technology accessible to companies of all sizes.
“The rapid uptake of VANs globally has been driven by a need for new payment solutions to meet evolving industry needs.
“We are pleased to be partnering with Cornerstone to tailor the VANs payment solution to enable integrated payment automation and reconciliation for TMCs – a significant process change that will improve profitability.”