Data Protection

Marriott faces $124 million fine from U.K. for data hacking

Jul 09, 2019 / Marriott
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Shutterstock

U.K. cracks down on privacy breaches with second major penalty notice in two days, following proposed $230 million fine of British Airways.

The cyber attack, which Marriott disclosed last year, exposed information on 339 million guest records, including 7 million related to British residents, the U.K. Information Commissioner’s Office said in a statement Tuesday. It’s the second time in two days the regulator has taken advantage of far-reaching European Union powers after proposing a $230 million (£183.4 million) penalty against British Airways.

The proposed fine also highlights an emerging risk in mergers and acquisitions with the ICO blaming Marriott for failing to conduct sufficient due diligence on its acquisition of Starwood Hotels & Resorts. The hack likely took place in 2014 and targeted a Starwood database, two years before the company was acquired by Marriott.

Related: Marriott responds to Starwood data breach

Distribution

How Amadeus is rocking the digital transformation journey

Jul 09, 2019 / Amadeus
Amadeus
Amadeus

Amadeus set out to become more agile, customer-centric, insights-driven, and to convert its website into a lead-nurturing machine.

In 2018 alone, Amadeus processed more than 643 million bookings and helped to board more than 1.8 billion travelers. Personalizing experiences on this scale is difficult, at best, especially with a fragmented approach to different media channels. This is why the company moved to a single unified platform that supports seamless experiences across every customer touch point.

The first step was to consolidate everything onto one responsive website, capable of personalizing the customer experience by market and industry. This simple change has quickly paid dividends in terms of personalization and nurturing leads.

Distribution

Marriott facing lawsuit over ‘deceptive’ resort fees that allegedly harm consumers

Jul 09, 2019 / Marriott
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Shutterstock

The District of Columbia has sued Marriott International, alleging that the hotel company violated consumer protection laws for charging resort fees that it doesn’t disclose upfront to its customers.

The lawsuit claims that Marriott harmed consumers and broke the District’s consumer protection laws by not including so-called “resort fees” in the room rates advertised to consumers, particularly on online travel-booking sites such as Priceline, Expedia, and Booking.com.

Instead, the hotel company allegedly advertises a base rate for rooms to lure customers and then adds on additional fees either when the consumer ultimately books their stay or when they check out of the hotel, a practice known as “drip pricing,” the lawsuit claims. Racine said that Marriott “reaped hundreds of millions of dollars over the past decade from this deceptive drip pricing.”

Market Data

Chinese tourism in UK up by 133%

Jul 09, 2019 / China
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Shutterstock

A new travel trends study by TripAdvisor reveals that travelers from China are on the rise, and show no sign of slowing when it comes to visiting the UK.

The study examines the fastest growing inbound markets for the UK, based on traveler interest in UK destinations on the world’s largest travel site, as well as looking at the ratings given to hotels, restaurants, and attractions by travelers and guests.

Travelers from China have shown one of the biggest increases in views of UK destinations, with an increase of 133% in Chinese travelers researching UK destinations between 2018 and the same period in 2019. This comes as the US is experiencing a dip in the number of Chinese visitors, potentially resulting from ongoing trade disputes and comments from China’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism about travel to the United States.

Technology

apaleo partners with SiteMinder to create an open world for hotels

Jul 09, 2019 / apaleo (sponsored)
SiteMinder
SiteMinder

The partnership sees apaleo’s PMS integrated with SiteMinder’s platform, so mutual hotel clients of the two companies can automate how they distribute inventory and capture reservations.

By automating the distribution process, hoteliers have the opportunity to increase their revenue while reducing their cost of acquisition and winning time back in their day to focus on guests.

apaleo’s open, ultra-connected, and intuitive PMS can be set up and ready to use within minutes – no long RFPs, wait times, or set-up fees. Hoteliers can set up their properties on their own if they so choose. Once set up, hotels can connect hundreds of applications, including SiteMinder, within the apaleo Store.