Data Protection

Marriott now lets you check if you’re a victim of the Starwood hack

Feb 17, 2019 / Marriott
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Shutterstock

The company enables guests to look up individual passport numbers to see if they were included in the set of unencrypted passport numbers.

The checker will ask for some personal information, like your name, email address, as well as the last six-digits of your passport number.

Marriott says data on “fewer than 383 million unique guests” was stolen in the data breach, revealed in September, including guest names, postal addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth, genders, email addresses and reservation information. Later it transpired that more than 20 million encrypted passport numbers were also stolen, along with 8.6 million unique payment card numbers.

Distribution

Why does Travelzoo have a big China problem?

Feb 17, 2019 / Travelzoo
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Shutterstock

The vacation package site suffered a nearly 30 percent loss in revenue in China, due in part to staffing issues and the ongoing U.S.-China trade war.

The region has been a source of losses for the company for over three years.

Four years ago, the company reacquired its business in Asia Pacificfrom Travelzoo founder, Ralph Bartel, the brother of CEO Holger Bartel. Travelzoo initially spun off Travelzoo Asia-Pacific in 2009, citing significant losses. However, since the reacquisition, the brand has been unable to turn a profit in the region.

Distribution

Baidu signs comprehensive deal with Ctrip

Feb 17, 2019 / Ctrip
Ctrip
Ctrip

Chinese internet search giant Baidu inked an in-depth partnership with China's largest online travel agency Ctrip, in its latest efforts to drive the development of intelligent tourism in China.

Under the agreement, Baidu will deploy its cloud services and artificial intelligence capabilities to provide Ctrip with solutions tailored to tourism scenarios and businesses.

Baidu Cloud, the cloud unit of Baidu will help Ctrip improve operational efficiency and customer experience and reduce costs in marketing and sales, customer acquisition and online traffic conversion.

Market Data

China outbound tourism sees solid growth

Feb 17, 2019 / China
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Shutterstock

Tour groups remain most popular form of travel, especially for senior citizens.

China's outbound tourism market saw healthy growth in 2018 as mainland travelers registered 149.72 million outbound visits last year, up 14.7 percent from the previous year, according to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism.

China CYTS Tours Holding Co, a travel service provider headquartered in Beijing that helped process 1 million travel documents for mainland travelers in 2018, said its data showed Taiwan, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam were the five most visited outbound destinations on its platform.

Business Travel

Meeting planners find solutions for commission shortfalls

Feb 17, 2019 / Meeting Planners
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Shutterstock

While many planners continue to feel the sting from commission cuts, the need for alternative revenue streams is leading some to get creative.

Some are evaluating strategies to recoup the loss and setting the stage with clients for a possible rate hike or even to start contracting with clients to share the results of the savings negotiated.

The Alliance of Independent Meeting Professionals, which was formed in response to the commission cuts, is enlisting the help of convention and visitors bureaus to make up the revenue difference either with discounts or added services.

Digital Marketing

Hotel distribution trends and other notable topics from HEDNA LA

Feb 17, 2019 / OTA Insight (sponsored)
HEDNA
HEDNA

This year’s North American conference in Los Angeles was full of forward-looking ideas and rearward reflections.

The OTA is in transition. In a post-session conversation with TechTalkTravel, Booking.com’s Todd Dunlap highlighted the global brand’s expansion beyond just the accommodations.

Reading between the lines, it's clear that the major OTAs see deceleration in market share growth, and are looking beyond bookings. This evolution becomes especially critical as the costs of distribution technology drop alongside the growing dominance of Google Hotel Ads.

Today’s distribution landscape is one where hotels of all sizes can profitably pursue more direct bookings with less reliance on the main players.

Digital Marketing

The importance of offer-specific landing pages

Feb 17, 2019 / Screen Pilot (sponsored)
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Shutterstock

You’ve met with your paid search team, and you’ve got your targeting set up correctly, the right keywords and great offers to promote. You’re done, right? Not quite.

One of the most important factors for both user experience and for Google is the landing page experience. In this article, we want to dive into the value of offer specific landing pages and the best ways to utilize them.

Rather than landing users on a list of offers or a page filled with different offers and package categories we have found that landing users on a specific offer is the best technique.