If the Expedia-Marriott partnership works out as promised, then there will be fewer Marriott rates on metasearch sites that are deeply discounted compared to Marriott's own websites. And bedbanks and tour operators will have to sign up with Expedia — not Marriott — to get their hands on Marriott's wholesale rates.
If travel agents want to access Marriott's wholesale rates, they now have to turn to Expedia to get them, Skift has learned. Following through on a deal the two companies signed in September 2019, Expedia Partner Solutions quietly emailed existing and prospective members of the Expedia Travel Agent Affiliate Program in the United States that they would be able to obtain "exclusive access to higher margin B2B (business-to-business) rates" from Marriott. These "high margin rates," availability and content from Marriott, according to Expedia, may cover more than 7,400 properties. Other than the email from Expedia Partner Solutions to travel agents, Expedia hadn't officially announced that it had started distributing Marriott's wholesale rates to third parties, but Expedia confirmed the move over the weekend when contacted by Skift. Expedia last month announced that it would extend its move into policing and distributing wholesale hotel rates beyond Marriott, enabling other hotels to sign up. In that announcement, Expedia said it opened the program to "all medium to large-size lodging partners," and that Highgate, with properties in North America, the Caribbean, and Latin America, as well as Club Quarters, which operates h