Apple Privacy Changes Could Give More Leverage to Big Online Travel Agencies

30 Nov 2021 Apple Privacy Changes Could Give More Leverage to Big Online Travel Agencies

“Personalization initiatives aside, Apple’s privacy changes are a great win for travelers, but a big headache for online travel companies. The result is the biggest players have the potential to gain advantage over smaller competitors.”

Dennis Schaal

Apple’s privacy changes are becoming a marketing and personalization headache across the travel industry, but they could further strengthen the largest online travel agencies with access to huge amounts of first-party data versus smaller competitors.

“We believe this means big consumer travel brands with mass distribution and the scale to develop smart, data-driven marketing will win,” said Clayton Reid, CEO of MMGY Global. “And, of course, Google and Apple will build separate — and perhaps different — ecosystems that force marketers to create different methods to engage in a specific, curated way.”

This means that large players that collect first-party data from their massive audiences or use permission-based models, rather than relying on third party data of diminished value, will have the edge in marketing efficiency and in operating loyalty programs.

Access to customer data likely becomes more of a super-charged issue. The hotel industry has long felt aggrieved that big online travel agencies don’t share customer data with hotels when guests book their properties on websites such as ExpediaPriceline or MakeMyTrip.

Facebook said its third quarter results were adversely impacted by Apple’s privacy changes.

In the travel industry, Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky said last week during its own earnings call that the company hasn’t been affected by Apple’s tracking changes. “No, we’ve not seen any impact on Airbnb, and that’s not really the business we’re in,” Chesky said.

Read more about the impact of these privacy changes. 


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