Twenty years ago, OTAs represented innovation and progress. Today it’s a corporate duopoly, controlled by Expedia and Priceline.
As competition (and consumer choice) shrank, costs to hotels grew. Now, 33,000 small businesses are at the mercy of two conglomerates – unable to afford rising commissions, but blacklisted from searches if they don’t pay.
Antitrust authorities must act for the sake of these businesses. But policymakers should care, too. Soon, these higher costs will get passed to consumers across America. When that happens, they’re going to wonder why their representatives watched unfair play from the sidelines rather than blowing the whistle.