Mon | Sep 23, 2019

CHTA rejects booking.com's new commission rates

Published:Thursday | July 18, 2019 | 9:49 AM
Frank Comito - Contributed photo

MIAMI, CMC – The Caribbean Hotel and Tourism Association (CHTA) has rejected an online travel agency’s commission as “grossly unfair” and “regressive.”

On Wednesday, CHTA said an overwhelming majority of Caribbean hotels are reconsidering using Booking.com as a result of the new commission policy that they claim is aimed at generating additional revenue for the online giant at the expense of consumers, the region’s destinations, hotels and employees.

CHTA has called for the immediate discontinuance of the policy.

In a letter to Booking.com, CHTA cited “a strong negative backlash” from members, “particularly how it cuts into employee tips and gratuities.”

The association pointed to a recent survey of its 33 national hotel and tourism federation associations, and hotels, which it said “revealed a belief the commission policy was ‘regressive and punitive’ adding to Booking.com’s revenue while reducing the profitability of the Caribbean tourism industry, hotel operations and the earnings of many of the region’s employees.” 

CHTA’s chief executive officer and director general, Frank Comito, said the commissions would “directly affect traveller's because some of the higher costs associated with additional payments to Booking.com will need to be shared by the travelling public, as some hotels seek to recoup losses by raising prices.”

“In a region where consumer price sensitivity and high operating costs are an ongoing challenge, this presents the industry with an added predicament,” he said. 

“Without further consideration and a reversal of your policy, we can only advise hotels to reassess their use of your platform and consider placing added emphasis on other booking options,” CHTA noted.

We want to hear from you! Send us a message on WhatsApp at 1-876-499-0169, email us at editors@gleanerjm.com or onlinefeedback@gleanerjm.com.