Expedia Brand has announced a “new direction” as the world prepares for the return of travel demand.
Expedia’s new positioning marks a “pivotal moment” for the brand as it looks to overhaul its business to better cater to travellers who value maximizing their time and who want to get the most out of their overall travel experience.
From an updated look and feel to enhanced product offerings, Expedia says it is doubling down on efforts to deliver on travellers' evolving wants and needs in a post-pandemic world.
"For the past 25 years, we've been focused on volume and transactions as our way of growing our business. What we've found however, over the past year, is that our customers want more from a travel company. They want a trusted partner who is there with them every step of the way, supporting them to ensure they get the most out of their trips," said Shiv Singh, senior vice-president and general manager at Expedia Brand, in a release.
"As travellers adjust to the new norms post-COVID, we must adjust as well, and this is just the first chapter in a multi-year journey to really deliver against our mission of being a brand that is there for travellers from start to finish."
Fresh look & experience
At the heart of the rebrand is a refresh of Expedia's platform – the new home screens reflect a clear and simple layout with product features that Expedia says will empower travellers to build a complete trip that seamlessly suits their needs and interests.
Expedia has introduced updates aligned to its vision of being the ultimate travel companion, including:
A new itinerary experience that allows travellers to see all the details of their trip in one place, be it on the mobile app or web. Expedia will also soon be launching a new package offering that provides pre-bundled products.
Support from start to finish – over the course of the year, Expedia will simplify its insurance experience including translating the policy wording into easy-to-digest content.
Expedia says it will also continue to invest in its virtual agent platform.
Through the 'one-click cancel' function, travellers can cancel their entire trip or ask the virtual agent questions about their itinerary, including viewing the health and hygiene information for a particular hotel for fast resolution and no wait times.
Travellers will also be able to see popular activities near their accommodation on the accommodation details page.
Getting the most out of every trip – the Expedia Rewards program will be simplified by merging with the existing account setup process, allowing 25 million travellers who were not already enrolled in Expedia's loyalty program to start earning points on travel experiences the next time they log in.
Expedia will be introducing more benefits to the Expedia Rewards loyalty program this year, making it easier for travellers to understand how they can earn and use points while providing a richer program offering.
Expedia has also embarked on a new flight shopping experience to provide travellers with a clear view of their flight options so they can make informed choices.
Expedia also recently launched the ability to shop by lodging amenities.
Previously, many of the features included in each room rate were bundled such as parking or a complimentary breakfast, making it difficult for travellers to compare and fully understand what they were getting in their booking.
Expedia now explicitly calls out the difference in pricing for amenities to take the guesswork out of what's included in a displayed rate.
Expedia will also be unveiling a new global creative across multiple touchpoints supported by the brand's largest marketing spend in more than five years.
Using a singular creative platform and the new tagline "It matters who you travel with" travellers will see the idea of Expedia as the ultimate travel companion come through in unique ways across various channels, creating a cohesive message that will resonate as people start travelling again.
“Our new brand positioning acts as a promise to the traveller who wants to be engaged by possibilities, but now more than ever needs to feel supported throughout their journey. We know that people want to get back to travel, we want them to feel confident in the travel experience they can have with Expedia,” said Singh.
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