BELLEVUE, Wash.—Expedia and Best Western International have signed a global partnership agreement to distribute Best Western branded hotels on Expedia sites.
Expedia features more than 150 travel sites in more than 70 countries, while Best Western has more than 4,000 hotels in over 100 countries and territories worldwide.
“Expedia is an incredibly valuable distribution and marketing channel, and we see this new strategic partnership as a great investment to ensure hoteliers can easily and efficiently sell their hotel rooms on their sites,” said Dorothy Dowling, senior vice president of marketing and sales at Best Western International. “Expedia excels at driving demand from around the world, and their marketing power is something that our hotels will benefit from leveraging.”
The agreement includes participation in the Expedia Traveler Preference program, which provides Expedia shoppers with an option to pay at the time of the booking or pay the hotel at the time of stay. Further, technology enhancements between the two companies will also ensure that rates and availability of rooms will be reflected in real-time on Expedia sites, providing the best possible customer experience with seamless booking integration.
Best Western announced the proposed terms of the global partnership at its North American Convention in Toronto in October, and then issued a ballot to its North American membership and international affiliates to approve the deal.
The business terms of the deal, as outlined by Dowling at the convention, include a lower commission rate of 15 percent on a last room available (LRA) basis, and package and opaque offers at 25 percent, with properties participating in these rate plans on an opt-out (non-LRA) basis. Commissions will be through Best Cheque, removing the need for manual reconciliations of commissions. All businesses will be connected through the brand through Best Western’s connectivity partnership. There is an annual subscriber fee of $250 per property, which Expedia will match to allow Best Western to do brand marketing in Expedia’s media solutions. Best Western hotels that maintain exceptionally high occupancies and do not work through wholesalers or OTAs will have the option to apply for a waiver to be exempted from the deal.