The Booking Battle: OTAs Break Into the Loyalty Market

Facing steep competition from fellow booking websites, online travel agencies have been experimenting with travel rewards as a means of incentivizing consumer loyalty — at the expense of straining relationships with the hotels with which they partner. In the 1990s, OTAs threw a wrench in the hotel booking process by allowing travelers to compare prices […]

STA Travel drops animal attractions

STA Travel has dropped tours taking in elephant rides and Tiger Temple in Thailand, as well as trips to SeaWorld in Orlando and San Diego. The company is reviewing all its provision involving contact with animals to ensure they meet what it believes are the ethical standards demanded by its customers, some of whom had […]

Google Glass has been released into the wild

Google Glass has been released into the wild – at least for those dropping $1,500 – and app developers are beginning to take the emerging platform a bit more seriously. Spanish OTA Destinia has created “Hotel Near Me,” which allows Glass users to search for hotels, and then ultimately book one of the 200,000 hotels on […]

Can Google disrupt the online travel industry?

According to Bloomberg, Google has now licensed Room 77’s hotel booking software. Room 77 is a start-up backed by Expedia, one of the leading online travel agencies, or OTAs. This is not the first time Google has tried to compete directly with OTAs such as Priceline, Expedia, Orbitz Worldwide, and TripAdvisor for a piece of […]

STAY WYSE to highlight the impact of OTA commission increases during ITB Berlin 2014

STAY WYSE, the global association representing the youth travel accommodation industry, will be highlighting the real impact of online travel agents’ (OTA) commission increases on the youth travel market at next week’s ITB Berlin. David Chapman, Director General of WYSE Travel Confederation and Professor Greg Richards are taking to the Youth Hall’s ‘big stage’ at […]

Booking.com’s mobile bookings grow 160% in 2013

From $3 billion in 2012 to $8 billion in 2013 Booking.com, the world’s number one accommodation site, continues to see strong growth in mobile bookings. The total transaction value of mobile accommodation bookings more than doubled from over $3 billion in 2012 to over $8 billion in 2013. Looking back at the 2011 figure where […]

A&O terminates parity in online channels and partially shifts commission

The constant increase of commissions by Online Travel Agencies (OTA’s), recently with a 20 per cent rise of the company hostelworld, has prompted A&O to terminate the rate parity on the web. “We feel that consumers should pay more at those intermediaries that claim higher production costs. The continuous increase of commissions cannot solely develop […]

Life at sharp end of hostel distribution as mega-brands close ranks

Excerpt from Tnooz There has recently been some rather seismic activity taking place in that often little known end of the accommodation distribution debate – hostels. Almost one year after Web Reservations International (WRI), parent company of HostelWorld, acquired its main competitor in the online hostel reservations market, HostelBookers, the new joint company announced to hostel […]

Join STAY WYSE at ITB Berlin 2014

STAY WYSE is delighted to be exhibiting at ITB Berlin on the WYSE Travel Confederation stand from 5 – 9 March 2014. Visit us on stand #106 (Hall 4.1), where our WYSE Travel Confederation team, including Director General David Chapman, Laura Daly (STAY WYSE & Research) and Luciana Spadina (membership), will be delighted to welcome you. Email us […]

Hostelworld explains increase in commission

Following a recent request by STAY WYSE to Hostelworld for an explanation on the recent increases in commission by the Online Travel Agent for Hostels and the disquiet it has caused within the sector, the following letter was received by the association: STAY WYSE Members, As an organisation that represents the industry, I am sure STAY WYSE has […]