Industry figures have welcomed the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) enforcement action against major online travel agents on hotel bookings but said it does not go far enough.
But Bed & Breakfast Association chairman David Weston said the CMA had failed to address a key complaint on ‘rate parity’ clauses.
He said: “Rate-parity clauses in contracts prevent accommodation owners discounting their own prices to their own customers on their own sites. The OTAs demand commission – typically 15%‑20% – and insist the B&B or hotel charge the commission-inclusive price to customers even when no commission is payable.”
Weston said: “We asked the CMA to ban rate-parity clauses in the UK, as they have been in France, Italy, Austria and Germany.”
Trailfinders chief executive Toby Kelly complained the CMA had missed “the most-salient point”. He said: “A large OTA recently ran a campaign making a virtue of booking a flight and hotel separately. This deprives the traveller of protection.”
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