Kayak.com, a travel search engine, is looking to use its search data to provide limited-time hotel deals, it announced in a press release.
The service uses the company’s search data to identify what hotels are most popular with Kayak users, and then sources special deals from those hotels at prices reduced by as much as 50 percent.
Let’s hope those half-off specials are rare.
Paul English, chief technology officer and co-founder said: “People already know they can come to Kayak.com to compare prices from hundreds of travel sites. Now we're using search data to negotiate unique hotel deals that are only available to Kayak members.”
Has anyone been contacted by Kayak to participate in this program? It will be interesting to see how it compares with the established online travel agencies.
Choice Hotels International offered an update on its hotel projects in Haiti. It remains on track to open two properties in Jacmel, Haiti, expanding its support of relief efforts and sending supplies to the property slated to open as a Comfort Inn hotel later this year, according to a press release. Earlier this month, Choice announced plans to open a 32-room Comfort Inn hotel and a 120-room Ascend Collection member hotel.
The not-yet-complete hotel did not experience structural damage and is providing shelter to guests and local families, the company said.
Speaking of Choice, the company’s CEO has chimed in with his thoughts on the Americas Lodging Investment Summit held last week in San Diego. In an interview with Barbara De Lollis’ Hotel Check-in blog on usatoday.com, Joyce said he thought the mood at this year’s ALIS was “guardedly optimistic.”
“The industry is poised for a stronger year this year,” he said, “but real recovery and growth will most likely occur in 2011.”
For other ALIS-related news, turn to HotelNewsNow.com’s Shawn A. Turner’s coverage of a panel that provided an update from Capitol Hill. Panelists shared information on a range of tax issues, including the carried-interest tax and the ongoing room rate tax battle between online travel agents and municipalities.
The panelists also took advantage of the opportunity to editorialize a bit about the current state of Congress.
“During each session of Congress over the last 20 years, everyone has said, ‘This is the most partisan I’ve seen,’” said Tony Edwards, executive VP and general counsel for the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts. “It’s getting worse.”
Read "Tax talk at ALIS."
Belgium-based Rezidor Hotel Group said it tallied a record 36 openings comprising 7,100 rooms across Europe, the Middle East and Africa during 2009. The company recorded 33 openings, comprising 6,500 rooms, during 2008.
In a news release, company president and CEO Kurt Ritter said Rezidor focused on fee-based contracts during 2009, which accounted for 87 percent of all its hotels last year. Rezidor has also placed a focus on emerging markets, such as Russia and Africa.
Compiled by Stacey Mieyal Higgins and Shawn A. Turner.