October 09, 2012

Less desirable rooms are for OTAs?


A travelers' chances of ending up in a less desirable room increase when you book through an OTA, writes The Wall Street Journal. The same applies for many hotel extras, like Wi-Fi and bottled water, which may not be included with rooms booked through third party sites.

Your chances of ending up in a less desirable room increase when you book through a third-party site, says Bjorn Hanson, dean of New York University's Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management. That includes rooms near the loading dock, the service elevator or a renovation zone, he says. Online agencies counter that their contracts stipulate all customers be treated equally.

Many hotel extras, like Wi-Fi and bottled water, may not be included with rooms booked through outside sites. Some hotels also withhold loyalty points, says Tim Winship, publisher of loyalty-program advice site FrequentFlier.com. Sites have responded by offering their own loyalty programs. Expedia's Hotels.com offers a free night's stay at over 85,000 hotels for customers who reserve 10 nights. And some work directly with hotels to provide perks.

Get the full story at The Wall Street Journal