Star Ratings Australia has outlined a new strategic direction following the transfer of management to Australian Motoring Services – a wholly owned subsidiary of the Australian Auto Clubs.
Australian Motoring Services General Manager Damien Hanger today revealed plans to use the $1 million annual promotional budget to incorporate consumer ratings and reviews, build closer ties with industry and Auto Clubs and boost the credibility of the star system within the industry and among patrons.
Hanger said, “The Stars act as a gateway to decision making and provide clarity for consumers as they navigate the paradox of choice the internet presents and our aim is to re-position Stars as a stand-alone accreditation business that is focused on producing trusted and reliable rating results for domestic and international travellers alike.
“We also believe the consumer must have a voice in our scheme and we are excited at the prospect of working with industry to incorporate consumer ratings and reviews to ensure key choice drivers such as service, value for money and location are recognised.”
Accommodation Association of Australia CEO Richard Munro said he endorses Hanger’s plans to reinforce the value of the star system.
Munro said, “The Accommodation Association of Australia has a long history with the Star rating scheme and has always supported the need for a standardised system for the industry and consumers representing the quality of accommodation in Australia.
“The scheme represents a viable and systematic approach to ensure consumer representation and promote quality accommodation. The Association will be working closely with AMS and Damien Hanger to ensure the industry and our members needs are well represented moving forward.”
The Stars website will undergo a makeover to include free property listings on a new search engine platform. Licensees will also benefit from a Club Member Travel Survey that is representative of more than 5.5m Australian households.
Management will also establish an Industry Advisory Board comprising key stakeholders from across the Australian accommodation sector and will re-introduce Industry Advisory Panels for each rating category to ensure reviewing operations reflect the commercial practices employed by licensees.
Tourism Accommodation Australia Managing Director, Rodger Powell, said, “This is welcome news and we look forward to working with Stars to drive the system to deliver benefits to accommodation operators.”