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Expedia TAAP helps travel agents to satisfy demand for flexible travel

Mar 18, 2021

As distribution of the Covid-19 vaccine picks up pace globally, many of the current travel restrictions should ease during 2021.

For travelers, this means the potential release of lots of pent-up demand, with 70% saying they plan to take a vacation this year.[1]

But this desire to get away and relax or see friends and family will be coupled with concerns and uncertainty. This includes both concern over ongoing (and sometimes last-minute) restrictions on travel, as well as managing pandemic-related financial insecurities.

This means that flexibility in booking and payment options remain a top priority for travelers.[2]

Flag up flexible options to boost post-pandemic bookings

Expedia TAAP makes it really simple to filter by refundable rates and last-minute availabilities, plus it offers the option to delay payment until check-in to the property, which all help travel agents to satisfy this renewed demand at the click of a button.

Refundable rates

The prospect of last-minute changes and cancelations to trips looms large for many. Around three-quarters of travelers in 2021 say they’re looking for full transparency on cancelation policies when they book, including what the refund process looks like and how long it takes. Nearly half (46%) of travelers consider refundable accommodation a must-have for their next trip, while 36% want flexibility on date changes.[3]

With Expedia TAAP, travelers get this flexible option without losing out on choice. Nearly 70% of hotels listed on Expedia TAAP offer refundable rates–a feature that travelers appreciate more and more. In 2020, for example, travelers booked refundable rates 10% more often than in 2019.[4]

Even better, these rates were 20% cheaper in 2020 compared to the year before.[5] This delivers both the flexibility travelers are looking for, along with the value and competitive pricing they want.

Last-minute availability

There are plenty of signs that last-minute bookings might be one of the key trends that shape post-pandemic travel.

While travel restrictions initially forced travelers to plan their next trip far ahead–with the average period between booking and travel lengthening from 35 days in 2019 to 46 days during the pandemic3–that’s now changed. Travelers are now purchasing flights just 29 days out–and it’s the first time in years that this advance purchase window has dropped below 30 days.

With Expedia TAAP, you can be confident you’re giving travelers access to fantastic last-minute availability from a wide choice of properties–many offering great deals and discounts for last-minute bookings, too. Book 500 days ahead or up to 23:59 the day of check-in - Expedia TAAP shares live rates and availabilities on 1.6 million properties worldwide so you can maintain a fantastic relationship with the travelers you serve.

Flexible payment options

Even before the pandemic, the ‘reserve now, pay later’ trend had been gaining traction across industries.[6] It gives travelers the appealing option of delaying payment for their accommodation until check-in, ultimately providing greater flexibility over finances.

The impact of Covid-19 on household income and spending has only accelerated the popularity of pay-later payments.[7] In 2019, it accounted for 15% of reservations on Expedia TAAP; in 2020, that reached 20%, and already in 2021, this has risen even further to 28%.

With Expedia TAAP’s ‘property collect’ payment option, travel agents can offer the flexibility of ‘pay later’ payment to the travelers they serve, helping to allay any concerns about ongoing uncertainty in the market.

And it does this without limiting choice: There are 500,000 properties on Expedia TAAP that currently offer ‘property collect’ as a payment option. In other words, travelers can enjoy all the benefits of booking early, without the full cost upfront.

Provide excitement plus peace of mind

Put yourself in a great position to capture the post-pandemic surge in demand for travel with the flexibility offered by Expedia TAAP.

Our refundable rates, flexible payment options and last-minute availabilities mean you can offer travelers all the excitement of travel they’ve been waiting for, with the peace of mind they need in the ongoing uncertainty.