INFOGRAPHIC: Hotels vs OTAs – A Brief History


The seeds of the current face-off between hotels and intermediaries go back to the mid-1990s, when online travel agencies first arrived on the scene.

The creation of Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz,, eBookers et al gave hotels a sparkly and new distribution channel, yet it became obvious pretty quickly that over time their very existence would eventually cause difficulties.

The growth of travel on the web over the next 15 years saw the arrival of a steady stream of metasearch engines (initially led by Sidestep and Farecast) but it was in the mid to late-2000s, as hotels finally upped their game and realised they needed to put a lot more effort into their own websites, when the annoyances over commissions, parity and customer “ownership” really came to the fore.

A string of initiatives from hoteliers and changes to regulatory frameworks in some countries in recent years have brought the issue to the fore, giving the direct hotel booking debate equal prominence as the frequently cited battles in airline distribution.

The folk at Triptease have put together their own version of the time-line of events so far.

Here is the infographic:

triptease infog 550px

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Founded by two travel and technology professionals with years of experience in Asia, Representasia specialises in sales & marketing representation throughout Southeast Asia for travel/hospitality technology providers and travel-related startups, as well as providing marketing consultancy services for hotels and travel businesses in the region.

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