First Things

This week Executive Editor Dennis Schaal stepped back from the earnings buzzsaw that has been the last month and took a longer look at three brands he covers a lot: Airbnb, Expedia, and Booking. In the case of Airbnb, he looked at what it and Booking may do with their piles of cash, as well as what it should expect from Expedia’s Vrbo. These are two stories that would not have been possible to write this time last year when Airbnb didn’t have a year behind it as a public company.

Skift Future of Lodging Forum takes place on March 29 in London, and we’d love to have you join us. Early-bird pricing ended this week, but readers of this weekend roundup can save 15% off with the promo code WEEKEND.


Top Headlines

Why Trip.Com Thought It Needed a Generative AI Chatbot

Generative AI is far from making a considerable impact in the way travel bookings are made, but Trip.com sees the potential and is starting the hard work now.

American Airlines Is Shaking Up Corporate Travel Booking: Here’s Why

With just one month to go, there’s a lot of noise about American Airlines’ decision to hold back 40 percent of its fares, mostly for business travel, for so-called New Distribution Capability-powered channels and direct channels, such as its own website.

Booking and Airbnb Have a $22 Billion Wad of Cash — How Will They Spend It?

The sure bet is that the major online travel agencies will use some cash to buy back shares in 2023 unless the economy tanks. Less sexy than acquisitions, but good for shareholders. Still, that leaves plenty of money for some possible headline-making deals.

Air India to Bid Goodbye to Vistara Brand in Airline Merger

It’s still way too early to tell whether it was the right decision to nix the Vistara brand, but Air India clearly has its work cut out for itself as the brand name also comes with a lot of baggage.

The Case for a Sales and Marketing Evolution in Hospitality

The best hotels are moving beyond “heads-in-beds” marketing to creatively place brands in culture, catering thoughtfully to sub groups and interests. When done right, the resulting glow adds value to businesses owning their brands fully.

Expedia’s Vrbo Plays Its Hand in the Shadow of Airbnb

How would Expedia and its Vrbo unit compete in short-term rentals against a juggernaut like Airbnb? Set realistic expectations and play to your strengths.

Radisson CEO on Keeping a Brand Strategy Tight and Focused

Radisson is choosing quality over quantity when it comes to growing its brands. The hotel group CEO Federico González sees the importance of focusing on strategic geographical expansions while tuning to changing customer demands and sustainability basics for hotels.


Listen In

Hotel earnings season has just ended, with public hotel companies reporting their end of 2022 performances. In the latest Skift Podcast, our team covers the highlights, reviews the 2023 outlook, and pinpoints one of the most critical metrics to watch.


Booking Holdings Employee Geography

  • 47%

    Employees in Europe

  • 34%

    Employees in APAC

  • 17%

    Employees in North America

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