Expedia strengthens travel network in Asia-Pacific region


HONG KONG & BELLEVUE, WA – Expedia, Inc. has announced new agreements with several key supply partners in the Asia-Pacific region, underscoring Expedia’s commitment and growing presence in Asia-Pacific and building upon the company’s global momentum. By partnering with Expedia(R) these partners, which span the airline and lodging industries, join the world’s largest online travel marketplace and stand to benefit from Expedia’s unmatched global reach to travelers worldwide.

“Asia-Pacific represents the greatest growth opportunity for the travel industry as a whole in terms of inbound and outbound travelers, and Expedia’s ability to reach 60 million unique users online each month worldwide makes us an ideal marketing and distribution partner,” said Paul Brown, president of Expedia North America and Expedia Partner Services Group. “Growth in the number of supply partnerships we have in the Asia-Pacific region is a testament to the unique way Expedia works with regional travel suppliers to address their specific needs.”

With the latest launch of an Expedia-branded site in India ( http://www.expedia.co.in/ ) and the roll out of localized hotels.com(R) sites in Hong Kong ( http://hongkong.hotels.com/ ), Japan ( http://japan.hotels.com/ ), and Korea ( http://korea.hotels.com/ ), Expedia now operates 13 websites to serve Asian travelers. Expedia has also expanded support of its growing number of supply partners in the region, with a total of 10 offices, including newly-opened operations in Singapore, Bangkok and Seoul.

New and Expanded Hotel Partnerships

Expedia has signed new partnerships with several regional hotel chains, under which the properties of each chain will now be available on all Expedia- and hotels.com-branded points of sale globally. The new partnerships collectively account for the addition of more than 1,000 hotel properties to Expedia’s marketplace, and they include: Mirvac Hotels and Resorts, with more than 35 hotels and resorts across Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific; Australian-owned Rydges Hotels and Resorts, with more than 30 properties in Australia, New Zealand, United Arab Emirates and United Kingdom; Toga Hospitality, operating 46 Medina Apartment Hotels, Vibe Hotels, Travelodge Hotels (in Australia and New Zealand) and Adina Apartment Hotels (in Europe); and Stamford Hotels and Resorts, with properties throughout Australia and New Zealand; China-based GreenTree Inn Hotel Group; Singapore’s Fragrance Hotels and Hong Kong-based Marco Polo Hotels and luxury chain Anantara Resorts & Spas.

Additionally, Expedia has renewed its global partnership agreement with Asian chain The Peninsula Hotels, and continues its long-standing relationship with Shangri-La Hotels and Resorts. Japan-based RIHGA Royal Hotels and Hotel Monterey Group have also renewed their agreements to offer their properties on Expedia sites worldwide, the latter having also selected Expedia’s World Wide Travel Exchange (WWTE(R)) technology to power travel bookings on its own site.

Finally, Expedia and hotels.com travelers across the globe who are searching for hotels in Asia will soon see the addition of nearly 400 branded properties through Expedia’s existing global agreements with Accor Hotels and InterContinental Hotels Group.

Technology for Hotels

As Expedia’s worldwide footprint expands, the company continues to invest in tools to make it easier for suppliers to navigate the global marketplace. To date, more than 200 Asia-Pacific hotels in five countries have implemented Expedia QuickConnect(TM), which enables independent hotels and small- to medium-size hotel chains to exchange rates, availability and booking information with Expedia sites in real time. Further, Expedia has launched www.JoinExpedia.com in 39 languages, enabling hotels throughout the world to quickly and easily sign up to sell their product on Expedia sites worldwide.

“The expansion of our point of sale portfolio with the launch of Expedia India, as well as multiple localized Hotels.com sites in Asia offer a larger audience for our Asia-Pacific partners to market their product regionally and for our supply partners outside the region to reach millions and millions of Asian travelers,” said Cyril Ranque, vice president, Expedia Partner Services Group, Asia-Pacific. “Our commitment to both local suppliers and travelers visiting Asia is demonstrated in our efforts to establish regional offices and roll out new supplier technology.”

Expedia also announced today it is partnering with Hainan Airlines, a rapidly-growing Chinese carrier, for global distribution and private-label services, allowing Hainan Airlines travelers to book Expedia hotels and packages on its own Web site.