November 20, 2014

TripAdvisor Instant Booking “changing every week,” hopes to win major OTA participation


At last week’s PhoCusWright conference in Los Angeles, TripAdvisor CEO Steve Kaufer remained hopeful that major OTAs will decide to participate with its Instant Book service. Kaufer said, Instant Booking is changing every week, and as some changes happen maybe some big OTAs will say it looks a bit more like what we want to participate in.

The world’s largest travel review site has started offering users the opportunity to make a booking without leaving TripAdvisor, in addition to its price comparison service. However, the larger online agencies, including the two biggest; Expedia and Booking.com parent Priceline, have so far refused to integrate with it.

Kaufer said it remains to be seen whether compromises it was willing to make would convince the OTAs. “Instant Booking changes every week. As some changes happen maybe some big OTAs will say it looks a bit more like what we want to participate in."

In a previous session at PhoCusWright, Expedia boss Dara Khosrowshahi indicated Instant Book could turn out to be a “dumb pipe” for Expedia, while the Booking.com chief executive also expressed doubts.

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