Expedia Group has committed US$275 million to help supply partners, destinations and the wider travel industry weather the Covid-19 impact, as well as fuel industry-wide recovery efforts.
The company’s recovery programme comprises a number of global initiatives to support industry recovery and property-level relief designed to help independent partners and small chains rebuild their business, attract high-value guests, and optimise cash flow.
Relief initiatives for partners include US$250 million in marketing credits and financial relief. For each participating property, the company will reinvest 25 per cent of the compensation earned in 2019 from the property into marketing credits for use with Expedia Group.
The company is also reducing its compensation on all new bookings made within the three-month programme period, regardless of the actual stay dates. As well, the group is extending payment terms for Hotel Collect bookings to 90 days to provide additional financial relief.
The marketing credits and financial relief measures will become available to partners based on recovery signals, including demand trends, from their specific markets, so as to provide them with timely support.
In addition, Expedia Group is providing proprietary data, through a new analytics tool called Market Insights, to track trends on website traffic, stay dates, and demand source markets. The tool is live now and is complimentary to all partners utilising Partner Central.
To support chains and owner groups, the online travel giant has released a streamlined version of its optimised distribution solution that allows lodging suppliers to more effectively manage the distribution of wholesale rates among third party travel providers.
To restore destinations, Expedia Group Media Solutions, the advertising arm of Expedia Group, is opening a US$25 million fund for destinations. The group will also roll out a series of global brand campaigns.
Furthermore, to lift furloughed and displaced workers, Expedia Group has created a complimentary training and education programme, Expedia Group Academy, which offers skill development through online learning modules and live content led by the company’s subject matter experts and travel industry leaders. Participants will receive recruitment opportunities upon completion.
The group has also created a new feature for lodging partners to highlight the health and hygiene measures at their properties, to bolster consumer confidence. Additionally, Expedia Group is introducing a new filter to search flights by flexible fares on the company’s sites globally.