Report: Amazon Is Planning to Launch a Travel Site With Hotel Bookings

Illustration for article titled Report: Amazon Is Planning to Launch a Travel Site With Hotel Bookings

Looking to get away? Maybe you should just add a trip to your Wish List in the hope someone buys it for you. At least, that's what you might be able to do soon, if reports of Amazon branching out into travel are accurate.

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The travel news site Skift reports that Amazon has been working with independent hotels and resorts near major cities to kickstart a new Travel department. The report claims that the new service could launch as soon as January 1st 2015, initially providing hotel options around New York, Los Angeles and Seattle.

The model sounds pretty simple: hotels would list rooms, availability, pricing, and photos into on Amazon, then pay 15% commission to Bezos & Co. on any bookings. Hoteliers tell Skift that Amazon has been approaching them to join the scheme over the past weeks, using TripAdvisor ratings to target the best places to get on board.

The report suggests that the initial focus of Amazon Travel would be on places to stay rather than transport, though the offering will be "rounded out" with "editorial about attractions and other things to do in the destination." It sound much like Amazon's other early-stage dabbling, which start small in an attempt to see if they're viable at scale.

Obviously, it's tough to say how accurate this report is. But with Amazon increasingly looking to provide services for every facade of your life, it's certainly believable. Let's wait see. [Skift]

Image by Nic Taylor under Creative Commons license

DISCUSSION

Oh gods! Not another website where you can pay more and get less out of your hotel. It's bad enough that people are dumb enough to think they're getting a better price through Expedia or Hotels.com, when they are actually paying between 5% and 40% more for... Literally what ever the hotel feels like giving them. Now amazon is playing this bullshit game..

By the way. Yes you are. Are you a member of AAA? Hotels give discounts for that. AARP or Senior? Discount for that. Are you employed by the federal government? The government of the state your hotel is going to be in? Retired Veteran? Carry a government ID? Work for the VA? Yeah, you can probably get the government rate, which is usually pretty cheap *exceptions do apply*.

Point is, places like priceline, travelocity, expedia.com, hotels.com (and soon to be amazon.com) do not allow you to use /any/ of those discounts. Oh, and also the hotel isn't encouraged to go out of their way to make you happy because they're making about 30% less revenue. That's how these websites make their money. Book the room at 30% off, and then sell the room to you at full price..