Hospitality & Travel Articles

Free Hotel Management Software: Don’t Pay Before They Stay

by Abhishek Singh
Published on 9 June 2017

Summertime is when tourists flock to beaches, exotic travel destinations, and scenic landscapes to take some time off from urban chaos.

If you own a hotel, motel, condominium, RV park, or any other type of accommodation, a free hotel management app can help you make the most of the peak in tourist traffic. Features of hotel management software include customer relationship management (CRM), reservations management, accounting, employee scheduling, and maintenance management. A free version of hotel management software can help you evaluate your business needs and upgrade to a paid version, when required.

There are plenty of free hotel management software available. Before I list them down, it's important to note the difference between free, freemium, premium software.

Free vs. Freemium vs. Premium Software - What's the difference?

Free hotel management software is free forever and literally has no monetary value attached to it. The software is free-of-charge with access to only some features.

Freemium hotel management software is also offered for free, but you may have to pay extra to access more features. The freemium pricing model is followed on iTune appstore or Google Play.

Lastly, premium software requires you to pay for all features of the software through a monthly or annual subscription fee.

SiteMinder Prophet

As an integrated hotel management software suite, SiteMinder is specifically designed for hotel businesses to display real-time room prices, book hotel rooms without any commission, and create a customer focused hotel website.

What do you get for free?

The software is available free of charge with in-app upgrades. The product helps you manage room pricing in real time. Apart from room pricing, Prophet helps you in yield management to increase average daily rate (ADR) with revenue per available room (RevPAR). The software offers yield management by analyzing live minimum/maximum rates vs. market rates based on length of stay (LOS). As a result you get a competitive pricing based on the latest market estimates. Prophet also sends email notifications when there is a change to your hotel room rate based on the current market prices.

What are the other pricing plans?

  • The Channel Manager:
    • Price: from $56 per month
    • Trial: 14-day free trial
    • Features:
      • Access to more than 350 top booking channels
      • Integrates with leading PMSs, CRSs and RMSs
      • Offers flexibility to manage rates with pooled inventory and self-mapping

  • The BookingButton:
    • Price from $37 per month
    • Trial: 14-day free trial
    • Features:
      • Commission-free bookings
      • Internet booking engine customized as per your brand
      • Multi-language and currency support
  • Canvas:
    • Price: from $56 per month
    • Trial: 30-day free trial
    • Features:
      • Website design template for smart phones
      • Website management
      • SEO-friendly websites

What do users say about the free version of SiteMinder?

A user liked the real-time room pricing feature offered by the free version of SiteMinder - "We are running at total 32 Rooms distributed on 9 active OTAs. Siteminder has done a lot to assist us in managing and distributing our room rate and availability with zero failure. It gives us more time to manage other things in our hotel."

FCS CosmoPMS

FCS CosmoPMS is hospitality operations management software designed for small hotels. The software features centralized platform for small businesses to manage front desk and back office operations. The software lets you manage customer profiles, maintenance, pricing, and finance. Key software features include:

  • Guest services
  • Housekeeping operations
  • Engineering and maintenance
  • Incident management
  • Concierge services
  • Laundry operations
  • Operational communications
  • Reporting and analytics

What do you get for free?

FCS CosmoPMS features (as discussed above) are free for small hotels that have less than 300 reservations in a month. If you feel that the features perfectly match your business, you can upgrade to the paid versions.

What are the other pricing plans?

The premium versions of FCS CosmoPMS are available in two plans:

  • Premium - Available for $50 per month. FCS CosmoPMS offers a flexible pricing option under this plan. If you have already purchased the plan and the number of reservations fall under 300, the plan will be free for the next month.
  • Enterprise - Pricing information is available on request. If you have more than 300 reservations and would like access to all the features offers by FCS CosmoPMS, then this feature would be suitable for your business needs.

KWHotel

As free hotel management software, KWHotel caters to small and medium hotel accommodations. The software is available in three different versions based on computer and network deployment. KWHotel also offers free hotel management software with limited features, which can be upgraded to paid version with all features. Key features of the software include:

  • Reports on food menu inventory
  • Accounting
  • Assign user privileges
  • Customizable calendar
  • Automated emails
  • Group reservations
  • Adjust seasonal rates
  • Maintain a customer base
  • Individual reservations
  • Reminders

What do you get for free?

KWHotel offers a free version of its hotel management software with the following features:

  • View calendar
  • Receive free software updates
  • Change room price based on seasonal rates
  • Create database of customer information
  • Create individual reservations

What are the other pricing plans?

KWHotel offers the following premium plans:

(Note: pricing info below is in euros, check out their pricing page to find out more info)

  • KWHotel Standard - Available for €40 per year. Pricing is also based on the number of rooms which ranges from €40 for 10 rooms to up to €200 for 100 rooms. Features in this plan include:
    • One workstation
    • Includes all modules and functions
    • Free updates
    • Customize the software as per your branding
    • Customer support
  • KWHotel Pro - Available for €70 for annual subscription. Pricing is also based on the number of room which ranges from €70 for 10 rooms to up to €340 for 100 rooms. This plan includes all the features mentioned in KWHotel Standard, with one extra option to integrate with online and mobile booking modules.

What do users say about the free version of KWHotel?

Most users like the flexibility of plans in terms of features based on the price. Apart from features users can also chose the price of a plan, based on the number of rooms.

According to one user, "Software is well done and works flawlessly in every situation, but most of all it has all the features of the expensive ones with a cheap price. What more ? SQL compatibility, which means that you can use data for other personal applications… that's great!"

What Next?

It's always a good idea to try a free hotel management software for a trial period before purchasing one, so you can assess the features you would actually need. For more information on other free and premium hotel management software, checkout our hotel management software directory.

What other free hotel management software can you think of? Leave a comment below.


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Apps mentioned in this article