June 29, 2018

Triptease statement on CMA online travel investigation


Triptease welcomes the UK's Competition and Markets Authority’s decision to launch enforcement action against the largest third-party hotel booking sites.

“Large online travel agencies (OTAs) such as Booking.com and Expedia play an important role in the hotel booking landscape, but unfortunately their market dominance has allowed a few negative habits to emerge,” says James Osmond, Chief Operating Officer at Triptease. “Tactics such as false discounting and highly-pressured ‘urgency messaging’ create a stressful experience for guests which often prevents them from truly finding the best deal.

“In the majority of cases, the direct hotel website will have both the best price and the most flexible options for booking, plus additional benefits for guests. However, the vast market share and marketing budgets held by the largest OTAs has created a false impression among most consumers that intermediaries are the cheapest and most flexible option.”

Triptease works with thousands of hotels across the world to improve the guest experience on the direct hotel website. The Direct Booking Platform allows hoteliers capitalize on their web traffic and increase their ecommerce conversion rate. Beyond their product, though, Triptease acts a rallying point for the hotel industry, hosting regular ‘Direct Booking Summits’ that bring hundreds of hoteliers together to share their experience of winning bookings back from OTAs. The European edition of the Direct Booking Summit has been taking place yesterday and today (27-28 June) in Amsterdam.

“We’ve been hearing from hoteliers at this week’s summit that they are continuing to experience difficulty with OTAs ‘undercutting’ their price and misleading guests as to their offering,” continues Charlie Osmond, Triptease’s founder. “Guests are pressured into making decisions about their hotel stay - which is after all an important, often emotionally-led experience - that don’t always reward them with the best deal available.

“I’m sure hoteliers will be glad to hear of the CMA’s decision. While there are many wonderfully innovative solutions and campaigns being carried out by hotels to re-educate guests about the benefits of direct bookings, a wider recognition of some OTAs’ negative selling tactics is an important step in providing consumers with the best possible booking experience.”

Related Link: Triptease