Good morning from Skift. It's Thursday, May 26, in New York City. Here's what you need to know about the business of travel today.
Skift Daily Briefing Podcast
Listen to the day’s top travel stories in under four minutes every weekday.
Today’s edition of Skift’s daily podcast explains what Marriott was thinking when it launched its Homes & Villas unit, how CES is putting on hybrid events, and why Qantas invested heavily in a vacation package seller.
Short-term rentals have experienced a meteoric rise ever since the first rental properties became available online in the 1990s, and especially since the start of the pandemic in March 2020. But the sector has had its fair share of challenges throughout the years, and Executive Editor Dennis Schaal provides more information about their journey in the final segment of his three-part series, The Definitive Oral History of Short-Term Rentals.
Part three of the oral history delves into, among other topics, how Marriott International launched its Homes & Villas unit — Marriott’s foray into the luxury vacation rental market. In addition, Schaal interviewed hosts and property managers who saw listing their properties on Airbnb as an avenue to make money. However, they weren’t always happy with Airbnb’s policies relating to hosts.
Next, more companies in the events industry are conducting hybrid events instead of the virtual ones prevalent during the heart of the pandemic. But producing hybrid events such as CES, the world’s largest technology trade show, is far from a straightforward affair, writes Andrea Doyle, Senior Editor for Skift Meetings.
Sean Perkins, vice president of marketing at the Consumer Technology Association — CES’ producer — said that while staging an all-digital event is hard, going hybrid is even more challenging. Perkins cited the difficulties of engaging both an in-person and virtual audiences, which require different workstreams and skill sets. He added that for CES 2022, his organization had to train staff members to do new roles and put them into positions that were new for them.
We end today with Qantas. Australia’s flag carrier bought a majority stake in online travel agency TripADeal, just ahead of a likely boom in package vacations, reports Corporate Travel Editor Matthew Parsons.
The terms of the deal, in which Qantas acquired a 51 percent stake in TripADeal, were not disclosed. But the agreement provides the airline options to acquire the remaining 49 percent in four years. Quantas becomes the majority shareholder in TripADeal while private equity firm BGH Capital, which bought a stake in the online travel agency two years ago, has a minority holding in the company.
Qantas, which estimates the online package holiday market being worth around $9 billion, said in a statement it will allow its frequent flier points to be used on a range of packages. Qantas Loyalty has 14 million members, and the vacations can be booked regardless of which airlines are part of the packages. Meanwhile, TripADeal has seen a surge in recent bookings, with this month shaping up to be the biggest in the company’s history.