For years, Expedia.com has joined the industry-wide practice of claiming that consumers would always get the best prices for travel on its websites and apps, in many regions also offering compensation for consumers finding cheaper prices on flights, packages, rental cars, cruises or activities; but has dropped this offer since October 18.
Their rationale when questioned was that customers “now have their hands on the savings steering wheel themselves. They don’t need the old booster seat any more”.
The price-matching trend started in the USA, where hoteliers saw a surge in bookings via the new OTAs like Expedia and needed to react. Starwood successfully debuted best-rate guarantees for rooms booked on their own branded websites, followed by the other major chains, because the promise instilled confidence in comparison-shopping consumers and only a handful tried to make claims.
Currently the major players seem to be playing down or hiding their price-match guarantees within their T&Cs, although Booking.com is one currently prominently offering a price-matching guarantee on hotel listings.