Expedia has updated its affiliate scheme to help agents make bigger bookings by not asking for hotel payments as far in advance.
The global travel giant’s deferred payment scheme is being rolled out to Silver members of Expedia’s Travel Agent Affiliate Programme (TAAP) after trials with Gold and Platinum members.
Previously, Expedia Special Rate hotel bookings made through Expedia’s TAAP had to be paid in full at the time of booking.
Now, agents can book fully-refundable hotels with payment not due until seven days before the hotel’s cancellation date. No deposit is required, only credit card details to be charged later.
Gareth Davies, senior manager for TAAP strategic accounts, said the change helps members with their cashflow as many agents like to take full payment from clients closer to the time of the holiday.
He said: “It will serve best the smaller independents when they are making larger bookings.”
The deferred payment scheme – only applicable for hotels – is not available to standard TAAP members, instead acting as a reward for regular users of the service, who earn more commission at each level.
Agents see the same price as customers, but get a commission from within that amount.
“It’s an ideal solution for leisure bookings,” added Davies.
Expedia TAAP targets small agencies, tailor-made specialists and travel management companies, and has 2,860 UK travel agents currently enrolled.
Any UK-registered agent can join. There is no minimum revenue to sign up or monthly fee. Agents get access to 321,000 hotels worldwide. Commission ranges from 1% to 9%.