Issue 16: 4th May 2015

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    Rate parity agreement ‘anti-competitive’

    Booking.com has agreed a settlement with the French, Italian and Swedish authorities over rate parity which it says will be implemented throughout Europe. The agreement was criticised by a number of industry bodies, who described it as “anti-competitive” and “a decision to uphold rate parity”, with hotels still prohibited from offering discounts on their own [...]
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    Booking.com offers free websites

    Booking.com has launched BookingSuite, a new product aimed at small and independent hotels which will create free websites to sell their rooms online. The move marks the latest efforts by the brand to increase its inventory, as the number of unbranded and independent hotels in its key market of Europe remains higher than in the [...]
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    HomeAway ‘disappointed’ with Q1 loss

    HomeAway saw a 13% drop in its share price after reporting a loss of USD2.1m amidst weakness in its European business. The company cut its full-year revenue guidance and announced that president and COO Brent Bellm was leaving the group. Revenue for the quarter was USD119m, up 12.6% on the year as a result of [...]
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    Amazon joins OTAs

    Amazon has launched its local getaways service, Amazon Destinations, offering hotels in selected destination in the US. The service is currently only available for the New York, Los Angeles and Seattle areas, although it is expected to be extended further to cover the entire US market.  At present . there are no immediate plans to [...]
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    Thistle makes budget Wi-Fi push

    GLH has launched Thistle Express, a new budget brand which will offer “super-fast unlimited free Wi-Fi for everyone”. The company said that it would also allow guests to select their own rooms before arriving, as part of its “determination to shake up the hotel industry”. The first Thistle Express will open in London in 2016 [...]