Industry Update
External Article 9 August 2013

Hotel Prices Could Fall After OFT Investigation Into Comparison Sites

Office of Fair Trading examined allegations major reservation sites such as and Expedia insist on 'rate parity' from hotel chains and so prevent competitive discounting

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Hotel room prices could fall across the board in the UK following the results of an investigation by the Office of Fair Trading.

The probe into the world's two biggest reservation services, and, and IHG Group, which controls the Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza and InterContinental chains, centred on allegations that the major booking sites were insisting on 'rate parity' from hotel chains, which prevented competitive discounting of room rates.

Complainants also alleged that the sites prevented rival reservation services from undercutting them. The OFT probed allegations that IHG had made separate agreements with both and Expedia to restrict other reservation sites from offering discounts.

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