Popularized by Tripbam and Yapta, hotel rate assurance is now a common part of travel management. Dozens of travel management companies work with those firms to provide a hotel reshopping service and switch travelers to more favorable rates. American Express Global Business Travel decided to build its own system. So has Travel and Transport (which also works with Tripbam and Yapta). Now Expedia’s Egencia is doing the same.

“We’re in the process of building our own technology solution which uses machine learning for hotel rate assurance rather than rely on third-party technology,” according to an Egencia official. “We will be trialing it later in the year.”

Egencia president Rob Greyber

Egencia president Rob Greyber during a June 2018 teleconference talked about a hotel price assurance test with some clients and an unnamed third party.

“The data showed and clients found that there isn’t that much value,” Greyber said at the time. “There is a ton of value in the sales pitch, but when you roll it out and see it work versus the cost — the net cost of getting it running and supplier fees and so forth — it didn’t turn out to be that interesting. It certainly gives people more confidence. That is why we would look at partnering or building out those solutions ourselves. But relative to other things that need to get done in the industry, it just doesn’t rise to the the top of the list.”

Greyber added that if clients had “strong views” on something like price assurance, then Egencia would revisit. That’s apparently the case not just for hotel rates, but also airfares. Starting in late 2015, Egencia began working with Yapta on airfare price assurance. The two parties formally announced a partner agreement in late 2016. By mid-2018, though, the partnership was over. Asked this week about any current airfare reshopping services, the Egencia official said to expect an announcement in a few weeks.

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