Booking-Etraveli: the EU says no and hoteliers are happy about it

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Through Hotrec, – the association which brings together 43 associations or unions present in 26 European countries and represents hotels, restaurants, cafes and similar establishments across Europe – hoteliers welcome the decision of the European Commission to officially block the acquisition of the Etraveli group, the flight booking platform, by Booking Holdings.

The Hotrec press release highlights that this decision constitutes “an important step in countering the power of one of the most influential online platforms with regard to the daily operations of tens of thousands of small and medium-sized businesses in the hospitality sector” .

“We have long been sounding the alarm about the market power of Booking and its negative impact on hoteliers – said Marie Audren, general director of the association. “The decision of the European Commission takes these concerns into account and can only be welcomed. Hotrec will remain vigilant and react firmly to any decision having a negative impact on the SME hotel industry. »

A distribution study conducted by Hotrec shows that more than half of hoteliers (55%) “feel pressured by OTAs to accept the platforms’ terms and conditions (for example, regarding cancellation conditions or special discounts), that hotels would not voluntarily offer otherwise. »

The European association also recalls the progress made in the implementation of the law on digital markets “which represents an important step for the hotel sector, as it will also introduce the ban on all price parity clauses, which prevent hoteliers to offer a better price on their channels than on online platforms”.

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