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Online Booking Channels Continue Fast Growth

Online Booking Channels Continue Fast Growth

NEW YORK—In the second quarter (Q2) 2013, online channels which include Online Travel Agents (OTAs) and hotel websites (Brand.com) continued to experience the most growth in hotel bookings, according to data from the TravelClick North American Distribution Review (NADR). The NADR aggregates hotel bookings by channel for the transient segment (individual leisure and business travelers).

The OTA channel experienced the largest increase in bookings, with an 11.7 percent increase in the second quarter compared to last year. Brand.com, GDS (used by travel agents) and hotel direct (calls directly to the hotel and walk-ins) also increased year-over-year by 8.1 percent, 5.7 percent, and 4.4 percent, respectively. The one channel which experienced a decrease in bookings in Q2 was the CRS channel (calls to a hotel’s 800-number), which decreased -4.3 percent from a year ago.

Average daily rates (ADR) in Q2 across all channels grew 3.4 percent compared to last year. The OTA channel had the highest ADR growth of 9.8 percent. Additional channels that showed growth include: CRS, up 3.7 percent, hotel direct which is up 3.2 percent, GDS which is up by 2.6 percent and Brand.com which is up 2.3 percent

In Q3, OTA ADR is currently tracking ahead by 9.1 percent. ADR for the third quarter is also growing for the other channels, up 5.0 percent for the CRS channel, 4.7 percent for the hotel direct channel, 2.7 percent for the GDS channel and 2.7 percent for Brand.com.

“As occupancy continues to strengthen, hotels are diversifying their channel mix, using all channels available to them,” said Tim Hart, executive vice president, business intelligence, TravelClick, “Online channels, like OTAs and Brand.com continue to represent the largest growth areas and make up 40 percent of all reservations booked by transient travelers in the first six months of the year. However, what is interesting to note, is the fact that ADR growth through the OTA channel has continued to be very strong. Hotels are discounting less and also taking advantage of the changes in the OTA business model that allows them to drive more lucrative retail business through that channel.”

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