Online Travel Agents a Consolidated Channel | The Economist

Online travel agents: Sun, sea and surfing | The Economist.

Expedia has become the world’s biggest travel agent. Last year, its gross bookings were $39.4 billion, through brands such as Trivago, and Hotwire, as well as its own eponymous operation.

The third-largest travel agent, Priceline, whose brands include, had booking sales of 39.2 billion in 2013.

In 2013 online travel agents (OTAs) had combined bookings of $278 billion, according to Euromonitor, a market-research firm.

OTAs are making their Mobile apps more appealing by, for example, adding location services that help travellers find the nearest rooms and restaurants. But the swing to mobile is also because the way people plan trips is changing.

But not markets are online: Germans still arrange their holidays through traditional travel agents. The Chinese, who now spend more on travel in aggregate than any other country’s population, but they booked only 15% of their trips by value online in 2012, says PhoCusWright. PhoCusWright estimates Chinas online bookings will be 24% by 2015, making the Chinese online-travel market worth around $30 billion.

Priceline Says Facebook Ads Don;t Drive Bookings- Bloomberg

Priceline Seeks Results From Facebook as Google Wins Ads – Bloomberg.

“For Facebook and Twitter, we have endless amounts of money. But we haven’t found anything there.” Chief Executive Officer Darren Huston said yesterday in an interview at Bloomberg’s New York headquarters.

The comments lead the discussion as to which digital marketing media are most effective. Facebook and Twitter have grappled with questions of whether their social media ads provide a substantial return on investment for marketers, particularly at travel and e-commerce companies.

Priceline’s online marketing confirms that Google, is the best source for delivering traffic. About 90 percent of Priceline’s digital ad spending is with Google, according to Mark Mahaney, an analyst at RBC Capital Markets in San Francisco.

Priceline profit tops estimates as bookings rise

Priceline profit tops estimates as bookings rise | Reuters.

It seems that edgy and funy ads is paying of for price line.

Darren Huston, CEO of Priceline, the former chief of, “added that advertising for was paying off in the United States”. The company has beat expectations and growth in strong.

Online travel within travel is very strong, and within online travel, people are turning to OTAs even more,” Huston said. “It’s a combination of those things that I think have led to a pretty healthy environment for all the players in this space.”

Priceline: Now Top of the OTA Pack

Here's how you do it – the online travel playbook according to Priceline,, Agoda, Rentalcars and the rest | Travel Trends.

Its not only because of that changed the way OTA marketed hotels, although that was impressive, its also because they advertise better and spend more, and have more user friendly software and booking systems.

Their Google Adword spend was USD533 million in the 3rd quarter of 2013, up from USD375 million the year before and off line was up almost 500% – to US8.4 million to USD40 million.

The ad is fun and inspiring and now on TV in 40 countries around the globe.

Perhaps the biggest plus for the company is its lifestyle. Employees are empowered to make decision and feel part of an excising company that is making a difference.

Perhaps all that is why Priceline CEO and president Jeff Boyd has handed over control of the company to boss Darren Huston. Boyd will remain chairman and Huston retains his role as CEO.