Online Travel Agencies
Technology and the internet have changed the way we live, work, and explore the world around us. Online travel agencies (OTAs) have been there every step of the way to provide business and leisure travelers with empowering and innovative ways to shop, compare and book flights, hotels, rental cars and other travel services. Here’s how they work:
The Power of Options
Online travel companies partner with travel suppliers large and small to market their products – rooms, flights, cruises – to consumers. OTAs are powerful marketers, boasting more than 515M million average monthly visitors to their websites.
Consumers choose to shop on OTAs and metasearch companies to find side-by-side comparisons, access to the growing array of travel options and competitive prices. As a result, travelers have the power to search, compare and book from the palm of their hand from anywhere in the world.
The Power of Competition
Consumers benefit from comparison shopping, and OTAs and metasearch companies provide a full suite of tools to help people find the options that are right for them. Through millions of customer reviews, star ratings, photos and detailed maps, and sort-tools that allow efficient and thorough comparisons, travel shoppers can feel confident they are getting the most bang for their buck.
By offering unique marketing services to boutique hotels, bed and breakfasts, small airlines and other burgeoning businesses, these companies help millions of American small business compete on an even footing with the biggest names in travel and allow consumers access to unique offerings they may not have found otherwise.
What happens when I book?
OTAs operate much like brick and mortar travel agents. Through direct relationships with providers, they help customers narrow down their choices and then help facilitate booking.