The consolidation roulette on the market of the Online Travel Agents (OTA) continues with HotelClub announcing that it will join hotels.com on February 15th 2016.
This is following acquisitions and mergers from other competitors such as Expedia and Orbitz who got the regulatory approval to merge last October.
The market is getting hard to allow a small provider sustaining their business model in the long run, at the same time it puts pressure on the hotel operators with these giant platforms have a lot of power when it comes to dictating rates.
I liked HotelClub because they were offering decent rates with a good kickback at times, especially in Tokyo and Bangkok where I used the site sometimes for non-chain hotel bookings. The good thing about Hotels.com is that there is almost always a 10-15% coupon around that allows to push the price down a little bit plus you can go through a cashback portal as well.
You can find the announcement of the consolidation here.
It’s a new year and exciting changes are coming. Within the next few weeks, HotelClub will become part of Hotels.com where an impressive new world of travel benefits awaits.
As a valued customer we want to let you know that your confirmed bookings and Member Rewards points are unaffected and no action is currently required by you.
In the meantime you can continue to book via HotelClub and you will still be able to earn and redeem Member Rewards points as normal. Once we become part of Hotels.com, any unused Member Rewards points will be made available to you to use on Hotels.com. You won’t lose them.
If you have any rewards left on HotelClub that you would like to use it might be a good idea to look at that right now before everything merges over to hotels.com since their Welcome Rewards doesn’t use the same criteria for awards.
Soon most of these OTA’s are becoming just a skin of one another with the prices being identical. I always think that competition on the market is good but as mentioned above it’s very hard for these small providers to survive long term.