May 28, 2017
Hotels try to reclaim bookings from travel sites
According to the Wall St Journal, the hotel industry is trying to cut out middlemen like Priceline and Expedia that take 10-30% commissions on bookings, but hasn't yet figured out how to bring customers direct to them.
- Booking sites "were crucial for hotels during down periods such as after 9/11, but they have gradually eaten into the share of overall bookings ever since."
- Per Kalibri Labs, the commissions cost the industry "an estimated $4.5 billion for the 12 months ending last June."
- Generation gap: "A survey conducted by travel-data firm Adara Inc. showed that 52% of U.S. travelers between the ages of 18 and 34 prefer booking hotels through online search engines... compared with 37% age 35 and older.
- Priceline's CEO Glenn Fogel: "Free is best. Everyone would like people to come direct to their business. That's not the way the world works, though."