Online Travel Update: Airbnb Takes Action to Support Hotel Listings; Hopper Ranked Most Downloaded Travel App in H1 2021 | Foster Garvey PC


Fall has definitely arrived in the Pacific Northwest. It has been a relatively quiet week in the world of online travel. This week’s update features a story about one of the world’s most widely used distribution systems – Amadeus – as the company announces its second major (unnamed) customer for its new booking platform. Enjoy.

Airbnb takes action to accommodate hotel listings
(“Airbnb relaunches hotel strategy, moves closer to rival OTA model,” September 29, 2021 via Phocus Wire)
While the pandemic may have led Airbnb to suspend its hospitality distribution aspirations, it appears the hiatus was only temporary. Airbnb is reportedly testing a new API that allows providers to provide and display multiple pricing plans (similar to many of Airbnb’s OTA competitors). According to two of Airbnb’s beta partners – RoomCloud (an Italian channel manager and booking engine) and Cloudbeds (a US cloud-based PMS provider), the changes are designed to appeal to hoteliers. Airbnb is also apparently relaunching its efforts with its mobile booking platform, HotelTonight, as it seeks to fill several open positions within the company, including market managers. Airbnb declined to comment on either of these efforts.

The most downloaded travel app of the first half of 2021? Hopper
(“Best Travel Booking Apps: See Who Wins The US Now,” September 28, 2021 via Skift Travel News) (subscription may be required)
Those of you who have read my update in the past year or two know all about Hopper. While Hopper may have started out as a simple mobile booking app, it is now successfully leveraging its many fintech tools to attract post-pandemic travelers looking for maximum flexibility in their travel plans (as evidenced by the 1.3 million downloads of the app by US consumers which only occurred in July). As noted in last week’s update, Hopper CEO Frédéric Lalonde isn’t just happy with being the most downloaded app, he hopes to create the “West’s first travel super app.” . For those of you wondering, with the exception of Tripadvisor, apps owned by Expedia and / or Booking Holdings dominated the rest of the top ten list.

Other news:

Amadeus signs another hotel giant on its enterprise software platform
September 28, 2021 via Skift (subscription may be required)
On Tuesday, Amadeus revealed that it had signed up with a still-unknown hotel company to use its hospitality software platform.

Pandemic Twist Emerges On Hotel Bookings Struggle With Online Resellers
September 27, 2021 via Skift (subscription may be required)
Several hotel groups have been trying to reduce their costs for the past ten years by encouraging more consumers to book directly. During the pandemic recovery, hoteliers generally continued to avoid overusing aggregators such as Expedia and for much of their online sales.

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