Passkey International has a new tool, RoomList Express, that it says improves the efficiency and security of passing rooming lists between meeting planners and hotels.
The Quincy, Mass.–based meeting-technology company has made its name with a Web-based system, originally launched in 1996, that lets group attendees book hotel reservations online in the contracted group block while giving event planners and hotels real-time visibility into those bookings. But as efficient as that system is, attendee self-booking is only half the picture, says Sam Fahmy, Passkey’s vice president of products and marketing, because many organizations collect attendee reservation data and pass it to the hotel as a rooming list rather than having attendees book themselves. Those rooming lists generally have to be re-keyed—creating a chance for error—and are often transferred as insecure e-mail attachments or faxes.
RoomList Express is an add-on to the Passkey system that lets planners upload their rooming lists to a secure Web site, using any comma separated value (CVS) or Excel format. The technology then maps the fields of the planner’s file to the hotel reservation system so that the data can be imported directly, with no re-keying. The system is compliant with payment card industry (PCI) standards.
All of the approximately 500 hotels that are full licensees of Passkey (with the ability to set up their own event sites) have the new RoomList Express functionality. However, the several thousand other Passkey-enabled properties that only hold connectivity licenses (allowing them to be part of a multihotel room block but not set up their own events) will not have RoomList Express.
Fahmy said Passkey expects to make two more “major announcements” in the next 30 days. When asked to clarify, Fahmy would not, but pointed to the three key constituencies of a meeting—planner, hotel, and attendees—and noted, “There are so many ways these constituencies can be communicating.”