U.S hotels have heavily promoted the linkage between loyalty rewards and direct bookings. Wyndham more than tripled its share of direct bookings to 9.61 percent, and Marriott had the industry's biggest share of direct bookings, at 26.21 percent in May 2017.
“There’s no reason why LinkedIn, Amazon, eBay, Alibaba, and so forth won’t want to sell travel product either like online travel agencies that actually handle the bookings or via an advertisement model like Google uses today.”
As their contract expiration deadline looms, Hyatt and Expedia are maneuvering for position with Hyatt property owners. The new Hyatt-Booking.com agreement gives Hyatt some leverage but it likely wouldn’t fully make up all the ground if the chain goes completely dark on Expedia.
Premier Inn’s proportion of direct bookings is pretty eye-opening, but the brand operates under a particular set of circumstances. If it decides to ramp up its international expansion, it will be interesting to see if it chooses to make more use of online travel agents.