Deceptive Online Hotel Booking Sites

Hotel Booking Sites Probed by Consumer Watchdog - BBC

Excerpt from BBC

Hotel booking sites are to be probed by the UK's competition watchdog to see if consumers are being misled by them.

The Competition and Markets Authority is concerned that rather than helping consumers, the sites might actually be making it more difficult for them.

The CMA said it was "concerned about the clarity, accuracy and presentation of information on sites".

The investigation will examine areas such as hidden charges, search results, and discount claims.

Leading booking sites include Expedia and Booking.com.

In a statement, booking site Trivago, which is majority owned by Expedia, said: "Trivago will work with the CMA to explain the benefits it delivers to consumers looking for their ideal hotel."

Booking.com said it would not be commenting at this time.

According to the CMA, about 70% of people who shop around for accommodation use hotel booking sites.

Nisha Arora, a senior director at the CMA, told the BBC's Today programme: "We are concerned about the clarity and accuracy of these sites. Rather than helping consumers they may actually be making it more difficult for them." 

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