The hotel chain has begun urging travellers to book directly through them with a new television advert.
“When you plan a vacation at any one of Hilton’s 12 distinct brands you always get the lowest price only when you book direct at Hilton.com,” the advert promises.
But because Hilton has partnered up with the likes of Booking.com and Expedia, price parity agreements cause the company’s new commercial promise to fall flat. The cheapest rate Hilton can offer direct must also be the price it offers to OTAs.
However, what Hilton and many other brands have begun to offer instead is a range of loyalty rewards for booking direct through their own website, app or via phone. For example, HHonors points, free standard wifi and digital check-in are all offered by Hilton to those who book direct.
Similarly, on its website, Best Western has claimed, “If you find a published rate on the internet that is lower than what is published on bestwestern.com, we will honour the lower rate and send you a $100 USD Best Western Travel Card”.
Marriott has also offered to match any cheaper rate found elsewhere and give travellers 25% off when they book through marriott.com.au.
Chains like these have also upped the ante when it comes to rewards programmes and loyalty points, with things like free wifi, free cancellation and mobile check-in on offer for members who book direct.
It seems that larger hotel chains are looking for ways to undermine OTA price parity but do you think independent hotels have the same opportunity?
Let accomnews know your thoughts in the comment section below.
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