Who’s Online Travel Agency (OTA)? They are Agoda, Booking.com, Hotels.com, Expedia, Trivago.com, rentalcars.com, to name a few.
In this article, I’ll share with you how and where to get a much cheaper deals than those big guys.
First of all, do you ever spend a few nights browsing internet, just because want to save a few more bucks by comparing prices from various online booking websites?
No matter how you search from left to right, you hardly get a big chunk of saving, due to not much price differences between each websites?
Let’s go over 2 little-known facts of the Online Booking Industry in order to get cheaper travel deals in the right place.
1. Virtual Monopoly of Online Travel Agency (OTA)
Most booking websites are most likely belong to two companies, i.e.
- Priceline Group, and
- Expedia Inc
Priceline Group owns Agoda.com, Booking.com, rentarcars.com, Kayak.
Expedia Inc owns Expedia.com, Travelocity, Hotels.com, Orbitz, Hotwire, Trivago, and even the new vacation-rental site HomeAway.
2. Parity Rates by Public Open Loop Accessible Online Travel Agency
Expedia, Booking.com, Hotels.com, Travelocity, Agoda, etc are categorized as PUBLIC Open Loop accessible Online Travel Agency (OTA’s). It means that you can browse the price in the website without any account with them or password.
Hence, they cannot give you a wholesale discount on hotels or travel, because every Online Travel Agency has to be equal to or greater than the PARITY rates – i.e. consistent rates for the same product.
Violate the parity rates equal to close up shop, because they will be dropped by all suppliers.
If not them, where to get a better travel deals?
Travel is a commodity.
Meaning people do not care about the brand and anything but PRICE, if it’s the SAME Room, SAME Hotel, SAME Sand, and SAME Beach…
The question is : where to find it since it was monopolized by two companies?
Perhaps the only way for consumers to receive a true discount is to get the travel deals through a Private Password Protected Close Loop Online Travel Agency.
Why..? Because anyone can access the prices of Public Open Loop Accessible Online Travel Agency (OTA). They have to adhere to Parity Rate, and hence the prices tend to fluctuate less.
By chance, I came across a new booking website, TripSpin. In order to browse the price, you have to register with email address and password. It’s free to create an account just like what you did with other website, but instead of do it during booking, you create your account beforehand.
Thus, it falls into a ‘subscription’ category that allow it to gives the customers cheaper price, and you get the savings at no additional cost to you.
TripSpin is a more comprehensive Online Travel Agency as the booking website is completed with not only hotel rooms, but also includes tours, and car rental.
Generally, higher rating or more expensive hotels in TripSpin Snap will have more savings compare to lower rating hotel, it’s not surprising as the cheap hotel has very thin profit margin.
What matter most is, regardless more or less saving, the overall prices is 7 to 8 out of 10 times cheaper than other Online Travel Agency.
The prices shown are all-inclusive rates with taxes, hotel charges etc, so you do not need to click through check out page to get the final price.
Some may feel that the website is not really user friendly yet, as TripSpin is relatively new in the travel industry, but do you want to pay more for a user friendly website or rather to have a slightly less user friendly website with greater saving?
What impress me is they are constantly improving the website, customer service and even widen their inventory and range of hotels, cars and tour activities in their website.
How To Go About Booking A Cheaper Hotel Room, Cruises, Cars and Tour?
As you may aware now, hotels prices just won’t fluctuate that much as you are expected, so here’s what I would suggest to get the best deal online:
1.You can start with your favorite booking websites. (Remember to browse through their check out page to get the final rate inclusive of tax/hotel charges)
2. Always double check the room, cars, and tours available in TripSpin, if it is available, most of the time it is cheaper. (TripSpin rates are all inclusive with tax/charges all the time & currency conversion is available too)
4. Create a TripSpin Snap account for Free. (Just 30 seconds to fill in name, email and your desired password)
5. Compare the prices of your favorite website with TripSpin at the same time with same basis.
6. You can filter your search by percentage of savings, price, rating and hotel name.
7. Track the price if you want, as the prices varies by day too.
8. Place your booking.
9. Double check with hotel, car, tour provider on your booking confirmation.
That’s all. Keep your booking receipt, enjoy your trip!
If you like this post, please share it with your friends and family members so that they too will know where to enjoy the cheaper deals.