Trivago broke the rules • A collection of Meg on the radio
22 January 2020 7:10 am
Thinking of booking a holiday through Trivago? Maybe think again. The online booking agent is in hot water over some shady practices.
If you’re anything like me, there’s nothing you like more than kicking up your heels and enjoying a glass (or five) of wine while on good old-fashioned holiday. And like most of us, I’m always on the hunt for the best deals on travel and accommodation.
When it comes to booking our travel and accommodation, many of us tend to skip the travel agent’s office all together and head directly to an online travel agent (OTA). OTAs like Trivago.
OTAs are often a cheaper and more convenient way to book, but sometimes these online deals seem too good to be true, and sometimes, that’s because they are. I often find myself thinking, these prices are so wild, they must be criminal. And in Trivago’s case, that’s exactly what happened.
Australia’s Federal Court recently found that Trivago had breached Australian Consumer Law by making misleading representations about their hotel room rates — both on its website and TV ads.
The popular OTA used an algorithm which placed significant weight on which online hotel booking site paid Trivago the highest cost-per-click fee in determining its website rankings and often did not highlight the cheapest rates for consumers.
The next time you’re thinking about booking through an OTA, do your research. And consider contacting the airline or accommodation directly.
Trivago is clearly a big player in the travel games, so these new finding should set a precedent for other OTAs to follow.
I’ll be looking elsewhere before booking my next vacation. Hotel Trivago? More like hotel Trivag-no.
You can catch the clip from Oliver Peterson on 6PR here:
You can catch the clip from my chat with Geoff on ABC Perth Drive.