20 years of OTAs: How they changed the hotel industry

20 Years Of OTAs: How They Changed The Hotel Industry

The emergence in the past 20 years of online travel agencies as a distribution partner has had a profound effect on the hotel industry. That relationship continues to grow and change. 

The emergence in the past 20 years of online travel agencies as a distribution partner has had a profound effect on the hotel industry. That relationship continues to grow and change. 

GLOBAL REPORT—In October 1996, Microsoft quietly launched a product that would forever change the way consumers research, plan and book travel, including hotel stays. The effect on the hotel industry of the founding of that first online travel agency, then called Microsoft Expedia Travel Services, has been both profound and often changing.

“While I would include other intermediaries like Google and TripAdvisor, it’s true the emergence of the OTAs has been one of the most significant things to happen in the hotel industry in the past 20 years,” said Mark Lomanno, partner and senior advisor with Kalibri Labs. “It has completely changed our business model.”

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