New booking engine brings OTA software to individual hotel sites, so you can book directly with property
by Jessica Festa
A demo of RezTrip on the Stratosphere Hotel website

It’s no secret travel brands and online travel agents (OTAs) don’t get along — just look at the recent trend of airlines removing their fares from OTAs or penalizing fliers who book through third parties. Similarly, hotels offer more perks to travelers who book directly.

Despite the increased flexibility and service one gets booking directly with a brand, many road warriors enjoy the price comparison features of OTAs, as well as the lower prices. Earlier this week, however, Travel Tripper launches its booking engine, RezTrip Direct, which includes features OTAs use to drive bookings, but on individual hotel’s websites. It allows you to compare prices, but then book directly with a hotel, so you can get the best price without sacrificing the perks that come with booking directly.

Searching on the Stratosphere’s Hotel’s homepage I immediately notice the widgets incorporated by RezTrip, including a clickable TripAdvisor badge showing the hotel’s rating and the number of reviews for a more transparent booking experience, as well as a yellow box showing me that “202 people booked in the last 48 hours,” which lets those with inflexible dates know if they should think about booking soon.

There’s also a Best Rate Guarantee Badge, referencing the fact RezTrip Direct searches major OTA sites to see what they’re offering for the same hotel and same dates, automatically matching or reducing the fare to give the best price. When I search for nights, I see an outline of what different OTAs are offering — $34 across the board in this case — and what the final rate charged by the hotel would be based on this ($33.96 in this case). If you’re the type of traveler who books solely based on price, this is an attractive feature.