Amazon.com to Launch Travel Service, Enter the World of Online Booking
Amazon.com may launch its own travel service and feature booking at independent hotels and resorts near major cities, according to Skift, a leading industry intelligence and marketing platform in travel.
“The initial rollout of Amazon Travel would feature a curated selection of hotels within a few hours’ drive from New York, Los Angeles, and Seattle,” Skift said.
Sources told Skift that properties would load their room types, availability, pricing information, and photos into an Amazon extranet and would pay a standard 15 percent commission to Amazon for the prepaid bookings. Hoteliers would get notified by Amazon via email of bookings and would receive their payments from Amazon for the stays in two installments and could attempt to negotiate a lower commission than the standard 15 percent.
Skift has learned that Amazon had used TripAdvisor ratings as part of the criteria for selecting properties to participate, and would only use a few properties per destination, and they would have to be rated four stars and above.
Amazon would round out the content on Amazon Travel with editorial about attractions and other things to do in the destination.
According to Skift, the service will likely go live around 1 January 2015.
Amazon.com has yet to comment on the issue.
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An interesting article by Travel Pulse “Agents Unfazed by Amazon’s New OTA Venture”