January 21, 2020
Prior to Caribbean Travel Marketplace, Expedia Group held the event “One Caribbean by Expedia Group”, where a group of their executives highlighted the relevance of guest ratings for lodging properties and reinforced the commitment of the world’s travel platform to improve the travel experience by reducing pain points and stressors along the travel journey.
Freddy Dominguez, Vice President of Account Management in Latin America, Abhijit Pal, Head of Research, Travel Partners Group, Veronica Velazquez, Global Inclusion & Diversity Lead and Nuno Sales da Ponte, Director of Account Management for the Caribbean were the guest speakers at the event. They spoke about the unlimited possibilities that technology has brought to the travel industry; as well as the importance of reflecting the diverse backgrounds and experiences of Expedia Group’s employees, customers, partners, and communities.
Expedia Group seeks to offer low-cost and basic-feature solutions to alleviate travel partners’ stress, such as the new Partner Central Chatbot, that provides contextual help and support to lodging properties. Abhijit Pal mentioned that travelers want suppliers to offer a seamless and frictionless travel experience and to quickly and effectively handle any challenge along their journey. In this way, Expedia Group’s technology has the power to improve the travel experience by reducing pain points and stressors along the travel journey.
Additionally, the way travelers make purchase decisions is a matter for hoteliers and property managers. In this sense, Pal mentioned that guest ratings carry more weight that brand value as key attributes to select a property, based on The Big Decision whitepaper. A non-branded property has opportunity to compete against an established brand player for traveler preference by focusing on the guest experience.
Through this event, Expedia Group reiterated its commitment to empower travel partners with tools and data to growth their business and remain innovative and competitive in the Caribbean, as Freddy Dominguez and Nuno Sales da Ponte shared that from January to September 2019, the growth in demand to visit the Bahamas grew almost 23%, compared to the same period in 2018; being the most in-demand destinations Nassau (almost 25% growth YoY), Out Islands (almost 10% YoY) and Grand Bahama (more than 10% YoY).