Need a hotel between flights? Expedia's got you covered

July 8, 2019
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Travel booking giant, Expedia Group, is embarking on an endeavor to connect the hotel experience with easy-to-book flights in case you get stranded between connecting flights, whether that is from delays or cancellations.

Expedia Group is actively working on repurposing its Expedia Partner Central Conversations tools to enable Expedia and guests, with permission, to communicate directly with hotels if flights are delayed or plans otherwise change.

So said Arthur Chapin, Expedia Group’s Senior Vice President, Product and Technology, who was interviewed at Skift Tech Forum in San Francisco on the topic, “How a Product Mindset Changes everything.”

Expedia rolled out the chat tool in 2016 to facilitate communications, including when the guest is at the property, between Expedia and the hotel.

Chapin said Expedia has become very good at selling the various components of a trip, including flights, hotels, and car rentals, for example, but now it wants to connect all of those separate elements to improve the customer experience. He noted that travelers don’t think about travel as different products, but want seamlessness in all parts of a connected trip.

He said Expedia has mapped out of the connection points between various elements of the trip, and intends to roll out these Expedia and/or customer communications directly with the supplier if the customer gives permission.

After rolling out the airline and lodging portion of these customer communications, Chapin, an 18-year company veteran, said Expedia will quickly start rolling out other connection points, of which he said there are “tons,” to facilitate support during the full journey.

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