Expedia vs Booking.com: Choosing the Right Platform for You

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The Insider @ Houst
Last updated on
June 21, 2024

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Expedia vs Booking.com: Choosing the Right Platform for You

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Houst is a leading property management company specialising in short-term and medium-term bookings in eight countries. With over 7 years of experience and managing over 300,000 bookings, we help homeowners make the most of their properties.

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Booking.com and Expedia are well-known travel websites where you can plan your trips. They offer handy apps to help you book flights, hotels, rental cars, and even complete vacation packages.

Booking.com started in Amsterdam in 1996. It has grown into a major digital travel hub, with over 28 million properties worldwide. Expedia, which began under Microsoft in 2001, is a global travel marketplace known for offering a wide range of travel options on multiple platforms.

Choosing the right rental platform can skyrocket your income and guest satisfaction. Make the wrong choice, and you could miss out on valuable opportunities. 

In this blog, we’ll have a look at Expedia vs Booking.com so that you can choose the right platform.

Table of Contents

What is Expedia?

Expedia Group is a one-stop travel marketplace offering various travel services. From booking rental properties and flights to arranging car rentals and experiences, they cater to both leisure and business travellers worldwide. Their extensive brand portfolio includes some of the top names in online travel.

Features for Hosts

Here are the key features of Expedia for hosts:

Listing Process

Expedia offers hosts a simple and effective process to list their properties. Joining the network helps hosts increase visibility to a global audience of travellers.

Pricing Model and Fees

Expedia uses a commission-based model, where hosts pay a percentage of the booking amount as a fee. Hosts should consider this when setting their property prices.

Review and Rating System 

Expedia uses a robust review system where only verified guests can leave feedback. 

Guest Communication 

Hosts can communicate directly with guests through the platform, addressing inquiries and providing booking details. 

Property Management Tools

Expedia equips hosts with tools to manage properties, handle bookings, track revenues, and efficiently manage administrative tasks.

Pros & Cons 

Pros

  • Expedia connects hosts with a worldwide customer base.
  • Guests can earn and redeem points through Expedia Rewards.
  • Expedia offers a wide range of travel and experience choices.

Cons

  • Expedia charges hosts a commission, which can impact profit margins.
  • Hosts have limited control as Expedia sets standards and policies for listings.
  • Due to numerous listings, hosts face strong competition and must make their properties stand out.

What is Booking.com?

Booking.com is a versatile platform where users can compare prices for a wide range of travel services worldwide, including accommodations, flights, rental cars, and more. It features diverse property listings beyond just hotels, making it a popular choice among online travel agencies.

Features for Hosts 

Listing Process

Booking.com offers user-friendly process for property owners to list their properties. Its search engine visibility often surpasses even a hotel's own website, which can greatly benefit small to medium-sized properties.

Pricing Model and Fees 

Booking.com uses a commission-based model where hosts pay a percentage fee per booking. While it provides competitive pricing, hosts should consider this fee when setting their property rates.

Review and Rating System

Booking.com features a strong review and rating system where only guests who have completed their stay can leave feedback. 

Guest Communication

The platform includes a messaging system for direct communication between hosts and guests. 

Property Management Tools

Booking.com provides a comprehensive set of tools for managing properties. Hosts can manage availability calendars, set customised pricing rules, and integrate with tools like Google Flights, empowering them to manage their listings effectively.

Pros & Cons 

Pros

  • Booking.com's extensive global reach exposes properties to a large and diverse audience.
  • It offers amenities such as free breakfast and free cancellation, which can enhance the appeal of listings to potential guests.
  • The platform's simple and intuitive interface simplifies the management of listings.

Cons

  • Booking.com charges high commission fees, which can reduce hosts' profitability.
  • Hosts have limited control over how their properties are listed and displayed on the platform.
  • Booking.com's policies, especially concerning cancellations, can be strict, potentially causing disputes with guests.

Expedia vs Booking.com

Now, let’s compare both platforms side by side:

Category Expedia Booking.com
Commission Rates 10% to 30%, varies by location, property type, and season 10% to 25%, an average of 15%
Payment Process Charges guest's credit card for full amount; deducts commission; transfers the remaining amount to host's bank account within 30 days of guest's check-out Hosts collect payments directly (credit card, bank transfer, cash); no centralised payment system
Cancellation Policy Free 24-hour cancellation policy; hosts can set additional cancellation rules; no cancellation fee typically after the first 24 hours Offers three types of policies: Fully flexible, Semi-flexible, Non-refundable
Guest Reviews Automated post-stay review tool prompts guests to leave feedback on cleanliness, service, amenities Guests can review within 90 days after check-out
Insurance Expedia Travel Insurance: Covers trip cancellations, delays, medical expenses, baggage losses, 24-hour emergency travel assistance Partner Liability Insurance: Up to €1,000,000 (Europe), £1,000,000 (UK); capped at €20,000,000 for incidents with over 20 guests
Smart Pricing/Market Data MarketMaker™ provides market data to set competitive rental rates based on supply and demand Derived pricing for multiple occupancy options
Instant Bookings Hosts can choose to enable or disable instant booking; listings with instant booking rank higher. Optional: Hosts can enable instant bookings or review requests before acceptance.

Expedia vs Booking.com: Accommodation Options

When it comes to booking accommodations, both Expedia and Booking.com offer a wide range of options.

Expedia features over 1.5 million properties worldwide, including hotels, vacation rentals, and resorts.

On the other hand, Booking.com provides access to more than 28 million accommodation choices globally. Their offerings include hotels, apartments, villas, and hostels.

With such extensive selections, both platforms ensure there's something for every traveller's preference and budget.

Whether you're seeking a luxurious hotel or a budget-friendly hostel, Expedia and Booking.com have plenty of options to choose from.

Expedia vs Booking.com: Pricing and Offers

Both Expedia and Booking.com offer competitive rates for accommodations.

Booking.com typically has a wider selection of properties and can sometimes offer better deals due to its extensive partnerships and network.

They also feature a program called ‘Genius’ that gives discounts and benefits to frequent users.

Expedia, on the other hand, offers ‘Expedia Rewards,’ a loyalty program where you earn points on bookings that can be redeemed for future discounts.

Expedia vs Booking.com: Which One to Choose?

Both platforms provide travellers with a variety of options to book their ideal trip.

Whether you prioritise easy-to-use interfaces, a smooth booking experience, a wide range of accommodations, competitive prices, or helpful user reviews, both Expedia and Booking.com offer distinct strengths.

The decision comes down to what fits your individual needs and preferences.

Conclusion 

Deciding between Booking.com and Expedia is a significant choice that can impact your success as a short-term rental host or property owner. Each platform comes with distinct advantages, and the right decision hinges on your specific needs, objectives, and familiarity with their tools and processes.

Consider a vacation rental management company that specializes in managing multiple properties across various platforms like Booking.com and Expedia.

The Insider @ Houst

The Insider @ Houst

The Insider team at Houst is dedicated to providing up-to-date and relevant information on short-term rentals. If you have hosting inquiries, please write to us at expert@houst.com. For guest inquiries, reach out at guest@houst.com. We are here to help you navigate the world of short lets and look forward to assisting you with your needs.

The Insider @ Houst

The Insider @ Houst

The Insider team at Houst is dedicated to providing up-to-date and relevant information on short-term rentals. If you have hosting inquiries, please write to us at expert@houst.com. For guest inquiries, reach out at guest@houst.com. We are here to help you navigate the world of short lets and look forward to assisting you with your needs.

Commission-Based
Pricing From

12%
of your
rental revenue
The commission depends on
the property profile and location

Complete property management services

We streamline the process of short-term lets and assist in maximising your rental revenue in London.

Listing Management

  • Multi-platform listings
  • Professional photography
  • Listing creation
  • Price optimisation

Guest Management

  • Guest vetting
  • Guest check-ins
  • Linen and toiletries
  • Guest communications

Property Management

  • Cleaning and housekeeping
  • Property maintenance
  • Property insurance
  • Property management software
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