With the development of Online Travel Agencies (OTAs, ie. Bookinhg.com, Expedia.com, etc.) or third-party agencies, the first reflex we have when we want to book is to use these OTAs. Booking with travel agencies does have its own benefits, mainly it’s a really good way to compare hotel rates side-by-side and to have numerous options all at once. However, with Covid-19 alot of changes are occurring. Both hosts and guests are looking for savings so new options have been emerging. A new player is Houfy.com (https://houfy.com/17797) being an alternative to Airbnb, Vrbo, Booking.com and other OTA's. Booking directly has three advantages that you should know.
Booking directly saves you money
If you are doubting right now, you are not alone. Previously, the published rates of hotels used to be higher compared to the rates that you could find with travel agencies. However, hotel owners and companies realized that could make more money if they can convince guests to book directly, that’s why now their rates (most of the time) equal or are cheaper than travel agencies. For example, if you want to book a night at the Kensington Suites in Toronto you will be sure to find the best available rate and if you book direct you will get 20% off.
Booking directly gives you more personalized choices
The problem with a travel agency is that they are only “vendors”, they won’t be able to accommodate your special requests. Whereas if you book directly a hotel, you can speak directly to them and explain your requests.
Booking directly gives you more flexibility
Customer service: If something goes wrong with your trip or your stay, you’ll get better customer service if you book directly through the hotel. That’s because hotels give priority to reservations made directly with them since they didn’t have to pay a commission fee. Otherwise, you’ll have to go through an OTA’s customer service agent, who will then have to liaise between you and the hotel.