Distribution

OTAs are in rate parity with major chains

Dec 20, 2018 / Rate-parity
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Shutterstock

OTAs are more likely to be in parity with major chains than independents and local chains

OTA Insight's "The North American Hotel Parity Report" examines rate-parity trends for second-quarter 2018, and shows there are significant parity-loss issues marketwide, with independents and local chains facing losses: 46 percent of tracked shops in comparison to 33 percent for major chains.

A significant majority of parity loss from OTAs was from rates displayed 0 percent to 15 percent lower than brand.com rates. Issues coming primarily from non-contracted OTAs being out of parity - 24 percent in the case of major chains and 41 percent of independents and local chains - suggest non-contracted OTAs are the biggest contributors to parity loss.

OTA Insight investigated the common causes of the losses and found top-line parity figures have stayed more or less the same, suggesting a consistency in rate-parity issues.

Market Data

Ctrip affected by trade standoff

Dec 20, 2018 / China
Ctrip
Ctrip

China's biggest online travel agency is facing the short-term realities of the US-China trade dispute

It's not only the trade dispute, a weaker yuan has also discouraged some Chinese from traveling abroad.

Still, Sun said that although customers might not be making as many Western trips, "they will travel to Asia, or within China". Outbound travel to the US is just a small part of Ctrip's world business.

The company noted that the market for trips to Europe has been "doing very well, better than expected".

Market Data

What to expect from Chinese outbound travel in 2019

Dec 20, 2018 / China
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Shutterstock

Chinese tourists will venture off the beaten path to visit new destinations

Experienced travelers will increasingly shun the guided tour system, take firm control of their itineraries and visit exciting locations that are sure to make their friends back home swoon.

A recent report by China Luxury Advisors and Coresight Research saw a surge in the proportion of respondents who had made all their own arrangements and traveled completely independently (without a tour guide) on their latest trip, from 20.7 percent last year to 26.8 percent this year.

That bumped independent travel ahead of package tours as the second-most-popular option after group travel. Travelers from tier-one cities are leading the charge in independent travel.

Distribution

Travel agents aren’t only surviving, they’re thriving

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Shutterstock

A large study from Phocuswright foresees five years of sales growth by U.S. travel agencies

Phocuswright issued a report titled, “U.S. Travel Agency Distribution Landscape 2016-2021: From ‘Survivor’ to ‘The Bachelorette,’” which found that, "Travel agents aren't only surviving; they're being courted. Suppliers, consortia and host agencies are trying to attract travel agents to their products.”

U.S. travel agency sales will grow nearly 13 percent, from $112.8 billion in 2017 to $127 billion in 2021, according to data culled by Phocuswright from air, car, hotel, cruise and tour suppliers, the report said. “Leisure agents are specialists; they are entrenched in certain consumer groups and are communicating constantly with their customer network via mobile devices, social media, whatever works. Personal networks and relationships are playing into agents' hands, since this shows they're truly the keepers of the keys to lucrative leisure travelers."

Advertising

Local advertising’s next sleeping giant: Uber

Dec 20, 2018 / Uber
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Shutterstock

Not only does Uber have prime real estate during your idle ride time, but it knows where you’re coming from and where you’re going

TechCrunch uncovered evidence that Uber Eats will roll out a local-restaurant based ad engine. It will run a search-like bidding system for priority app placement.

Uber is already positioned to make this move given the restaurants it has in the Uber Eats system. That gets it a certain distance toward correct listings, menus, as well as payments and billing. From there, it’s just a matter of activating the ads-and-promotions option and making it easy for restaurants to add it.

Moreover, Uber’s ecosystem is an attribution goldmine. Given that it will fulfill the orders, it can easily track where promotions led to real transactions.

Digital Marketing

Why less is more when it comes to digital marketing

Dec 20, 2018 / Triptease (sponsored)
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Shutterstock

Multiple campaigns, digital agencies, and competing offers can lead to consumer confusion, inconsistent expectations and overlapping attribution and reporting

It just takes three easy steps to keep your digital simple and give your customer what they need to make their purchase.

1. Cut through the clutter: Too much of a good thing is not a good thing. Don’t inundate the consumer with multiple offers for the same product, as this can lead to 'analysis paralysis'. Sometimes one compelling offer they can trust is all a guest needs to make their decision.

2. Master your merchandising: Take ownership of your content through the entire booking process, not just at the first point of customer entry on a website or app. Use every space in the booking engine to showcase your product & value proposition in as few clicks or taps as possible. Don’t leave it up to operations or revenue teams to write marketing copy, supply images, etc., as this is not their area of expertise.

Technology

OpenKey partners with SiteMinder for automated mobile keys

Dec 20, 2018 / SiteMinder (sponsored)
OpenKey
OpenKey

The automated mobile key delivery will be enabled by SiteMinder Exchange, a connectivity solution launched this summer

Hotel properties that subscribe to both a SiteMinder Exchange-connected PMS and the OpenKey mobile platform will have access to this innovative, automated mobile key feature.

Mobile key has become a competitive differentiator for hotel properties. It is reported that a combined 60 percent of travellers are “more likely” to choose a hotel that allows guests to check in and open doors with a smartphone than a hotel that doesn’t. With the advanced automated mobile key delivery feature, hotel properties will make check-in even quicker and easier for their guests.