Expedia has announced a new brand direction as the world prepares for the return of travel demand.
The online travel giant’s new global positioning is grounded in the understanding that who you travel with matters, and comes after months of customer research.
From an updated look and feel to enhanced product offerings, Expedia is looking to double down on efforts to deliver on travellers’ evolving wants and needs in a post-pandemic world, according to its senior vice president and general manager of brand, Shiv Singh.
“For the past 25 years, we’ve been focused on volume and transactions as our way of growing our business,” he said.
“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.
“Like many travel brands, COVID-19 has forced us all to look inwards and reflect on who we are as a brand and what that means to our consumers.
“It became clear to us that in order for our travellers to have an amazing trip, it matters who they travel with, and we need to understand the important role we play in being that partner.
“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.”
At the heart of the rebrand is a refresh of Expedia’s platform experience across its mobile app and more than 70 websites.
Along with the ability to purchase flights, lodging, cars, activities and more on a single platform, Expedia has introduced a series of updates aligned to its brand vision of being the ultimate travel companion.
A new itinerary experience now allows travellers to see all the details of their trip in one place, be it on the mobile app or web.
On the Expedia mobile app, travellers now have the ability to pick up where they left off with a ‘keep planning’ feature that plays back recent searches and bookings to help travellers build a complete trip.
The brand will soon be launching a new package offering that will provide ‘pre-bundled products’ (flights, accommodation and activities) with upfront total pricing.
Expedia will also continue to invest in its virtual agent platform, with a ‘one-click cancel’ function allowing travellers to cancel their entire trip or ask the virtual agent questions about their itinerary, including viewing the health and hygiene information for a particular hotel.
To help them discover and experience more of the destination, travellers can now see the popular activities near their accommodation on the accommodation details page. The activities will be available post-booking and in-trip on Expedia.
Expedia also announced that its rewards program will be simplified by merging with the existing account set-up process, allowing 25 million travellers who were not already enrolled in the Expedia Rewards program to start earning points on travel experiences the next time they log in.
The brand will be introducing additional benefits to the loyalty program over the course of the year.
Expedia recently embarked on a new flight shopping experience to provide travellers with a clear view of their flight options so they can make informed choices. It also recently launched the ability to shop by lodging amenities – a first for the travel industry.