Agoda Goes Rogue on Pricing, It’s a “Constant Battle”
Agoda, the original Asian OTA, has gone rogue on pricing. Multiple hoteliers say Agoda regularly sells unauthorized static wholesale rates through the site, undercutting them on price without any regard for contracts.
Other times the feeling is Agoda takes a contracted rate and shaves its margin to push the price below competitor and hotel pricing.
Agoda’s contentious behaviour, which runs contrary to the two-way price parity contracts it signs with hotels, has led to it being cut off at times by several major hotel groups.
“It’s a matter of pushing back and closing them if needed,” said one.
Another complained about the “constant battle” of ensuring that the ‘static’ rates it has negotiated with tech-backward wholesalers on allotment do not end up on Agoda.
“The consumer still gets the bill from Agoda but we’ll hear from the wholesaler.”
Hoteliers say Agoda is taking multiple rate feeds and using the lowest one to ensure it always has the cheapest rate.
One frustrated hotelier said it looks like Agoda is moving to kind of a meta-search hybrid.
Both are right.
In a statement, Agoda has confirmed for the first time it is pulling prices from multiple sources and also experimenting with how the results are displayed.
Its justification is giving customers what they want.
“We aggregate a wide variety of supply from multiple sources and often experiment with different forms of display, including price comparison or meta display,” the company said.
“Only by doing this can we guarantee our customers that we are offering them the best possible rates.”