From the monthly archives: "October 2011"
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    German OTA market consolidates

    The sale of shares by the founders of Hotel.de to competitor HRS looks set to create a new major player in European hotel online distribution. The deal, in which HRS takes its stake of publicly traded Hotel.de to 64.6%, gives the two OTAs enormous influence over the German hotel market, despite promises that the two [...]
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    Booking.com increases hold on European hotel distribution

    Booking.com now accounts for 50% of online reservations in Europe, according to a survey conducted by Susquehanna Financial Group. While the site owes its success to its reputation as a supplier friendly low-cost distribution channel for hotels, there are fears that its increasing dominance could result in it becoming far more demanding with its hotel [...]
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    Issue 4

    Expedia fine reminds operators of weaknesses Expedia Inc. has been ordered to pay a fine of  Eu427,000 for "misleading marketing practices" on three of its websites: Expedia.com, TripAdvisor.com and Hotels.com by the French courts. With the fine less than the Eu1m anticipated, it was widely perceived as a slap on the wrist for the online [...]
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    Flash mob in the pan for Marriott

    Marriott International has announced a new product for guests at its Marco Island Marriott Beach Resort, in the form of their own flash mob. The offering is billed as “the dance craze that has been captured on everything from ‘Glee’ to ‘Modern Family’” and acts as an illustration of many operators’ attempts to keep up [...]
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    Expedia ventures into Asia

    Last week saw the 50:50 joint venture between AirAsia and Expedia launch its first consumer websites, with Expedia India, Expedia Singapore, Expedia Malaysia and Expedia Thailand going live. The move gives Expedia privileged access to a potentially massive new market which is also currently a key battle ground for global hotel chains seeking to benefit [...]
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    TUI looks to virtual strength

    TUI Travel CEO Peter Long told delegates at the recent Abta conference that the group planned to make “phenomenal” technological changes as it looked to increase its online presence. The comments were the latest salvo in the on-going battle between traditional tour operators and online travel agents, an effort which the former’s offline legacy makes [...]
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    Hotels extend check-in

    Gowalla, the location-based social networking system, has launched its latest version with a renewed focus on travel, adding city guides to its existing check-in functions, which log travellers’ journeys. With location-based services currently on the cutting edge of online marketing, many hotels are still cautious about how to effectively exploit them, despite their potential to [...]
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    Expedia fine reminds operators of weaknesses

    Expedia Inc. has been ordered to pay a fine of  Eu427,000 for "misleading marketing practices" on three of its websites: Expedia.com, TripAdvisor.com and Hotels.com by the French courts. With the fine less than the Eu1m anticipated, it was widely perceived as a slap on the wrist for the online travel agent. However, rather than being [...]
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    Issue 3

    Priceline takes bookings to the wire Priceline has launched a same-day booking service known as Priceline’s Tonight-Only Deals delivered through its iPhone App which will allow customers to access deep discounts up until moments before check-in. While the product offers hotels an opportunity for hotels to dispose of distressed inventory, it also threatens to further [...]
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    Kayak delays IPO

    Travel meta-search Engine Kayak announced last week that it was planning to further delay its initial public offering until market conditions were more favourable. However the real reason behind this delay is more likely Google’s increased interest and activity in the sector, and Kayak’s move has raised speculation about the future (or rather lack there-of) [...]