Report says hotels lose out with merchant sales on the Web – Travel Weekly

When U.S. hotels distribute rooms through online travel agencies (OTAs) in merchant sales, they give up twice as much in lost revenue as they pay out in commissions on standard agency sales, according to a new research report from Smith Travel Research (STR) and the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA). 

The report, presented at the Americas Lodging Investment Summit (ALIS) here last week, both reflects and supports hoteliers’ efforts to rein in digital distribution costs with initiatives such as the new booking site. 

U.S. hotel owners collectively discounted their rooms to OTAs by about $2.7 billion, up from about $2.4 billion in 2009 and more than double the $1.3 billion in commissions paid to travel agents through GDSs, according to the 214-page report. 


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