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With Expedia Partner Solutions, airlines are becoming digital retailers and the sky is the limit

Aug 29, 2019

by Gian Caprini, Head of Digital Optimization

Expedia Partner Solutions (EPS) unlocks the power of Expedia Group for thousands of travel partners around the world. One of the key segments where we have seen tremendous growth is airlines. EPS is powering the accommodation ancillary business for more than 30 regional and global airlines through the integration of one or more of our travel products.

This growth in volume of travel partners and transactions is fuelled by the close relationship that our team has established with these air passenger carriers.

One of the key areas for airlines to grow relies on the optimization work developed during the integration phase as well as the ongoing marketing and merchandising activities rolled out by airlines to promote the accommodation product to their travelers.

A significant part of the relationship between EPS and airlines is dedicated to increasing awareness about the size of the opportunity to maximize accommodation as an ancillary as well as providing key recommendations on traffic acquisition, merchandising, loyalty marketing campaigns and customer journey optimization.

The focus of this consultative advice is on identifying opportunities for cross-sell within the flight user journey pre and post-booking but also providing strategic insights on growing direct qualified traffic through digital marketing optimization.

Owning the traveler data, leveraging the most optimized tech and taking advantage of decades of testing allows airlines to become digital retailers in the accommodation space, creating a significant new revenue stream.


There are many advantages for airlines of using EPS technology

From a data learnings and content perspective EPS leverages the power of Expedia Group. The solutions offered to support airlines’ growth range from API building blocks to front-end interfaces, engineered to deliver conversion. There are 3 main product solutions available for airlines: for Partners

A high-converting platform built on the success of in selling accommodation globally. For Partners is available in 62 countries and it can be integrated within a few weeks.


Expedia for Partners

The Expedia for Partners white label solution is designed for airlines that are ready to grow their full set of ancillary products with one single integration. Expedia for Partners leverages millions of data points that Expedia Group tracks daily to test cross-selling touchpoints and on-site messages. The key advantage of Expedia for Partners is not only achieving high conversion rates but also the availability of multiple product lines, including accommodation, car rental, activities, flight + hotel and multi-product line dynamic packaging.

Marketing and web analytics technology is one of the fundamental strengths of our template solutions. For both our for Partners and Expedia for Partners templates, we allow travel partners to integrate a tagging solution which enables the set-up of tracking codes to monitor traffic and conversions. We offer analytics support during the integration in order to provide a full end-to-end traveler journey data visualization that allows airlines to offer a truly personalized experience.



A significant part of the online travel industry is powered by travel technology aggregators. Many technology companies have developed solutions to aggregate travel supply from multiple sources and these products are often pitched to airlines to fulfill the need of single integrated ancillary travel product solution.

When airlines are in the phase of choosing a technology supplier to develop their front-end experience, the most important factor is to carefully review the B2C first party data owned by the potential technology partner.

A strong backend system that allows the integration of multiple API suppliers is often strongly focused on margin calculations. Without a robust front-end experience too, conversion rate performance will be low and therefore the ROI of tech investment is likely to be negative.

In order to grow sales in the online B2C space, it is necessary to constantly test and review user behavior. But without a high volume of traffic the testing doesn’t provide enough data to justify optimization changes.

The flexibility of our API, EPS Rapid allows airlines to complete a direct integration. We have developed specific APIs designed to offer data to airlines in the process of integrating directly, such as the cross-sell API which provides content to create a personalized user journey during the in-path and post-sell flight booking experience.

One of the most successful models we have seen with airlines is when the carrier is connecting directly with our API and taking full advantage of our technology and data solutions such as the Sort, Cross-sell and Merchandising APIs.

As part of the integration process, we offer a full consultation on the technology solution as well as marketing and merchandising leveraging the learnings we’ve gathered over the years.

We have developed benchmarks that allow us to accurately forecast the ancillary revenue opportunity of our airline partners. This forecast is used to estimate the potential commissions generated by each website touchpoint, as well as marketing and merchandising tactics adopted by airlines.

This is a key differentiator, no other company in the industry has been focusing on evolving the practice of cross-selling to a fully developed product as much as the brands within Expedia Group.

In an era where personalization is key to success, we’ve developed a set of tools that empower airlines to leverage technology and marketing expertise as we believe that success is the result of a true collaboration.

If you want to learn more about our products and our methodology of estimating airline ancillary opportunities get in touch; the sky is the limit!

Get in touch

To learn more about airline digital transformation join Gian Caprini at Aviation Festival.