COVID-19 Impact on Global Online Accommodation Booking Market 2021
As the online travel accommodation market is deeply connected to the general travel industry, which was severely affected by the pandemic in 2020, the accommodation market also experienced a fall in sales across the globe. For example, usage of hotel apps since the onset of the health crisis declined by 12 percentage points compared to pre-pandemic times. Nevertheless, application usage is forecasted to recover and be even higher than pre-pandemic levels.
The top accommodation website in early 2021 globally is Booking.com. This was despite the fact, that the gross travel bookings of Booking Holding Inc., declined significantly in 2020 compared to the year before. Moreover, according to the same ranking, Airbnb.com followed Booking.com. Meanwhile, a different source again named Booking.com as the top OTA, with Agoda.com in the #2 spot. Moreover, the same listing showed that the popularity of online booking website Expedia.com fell substantially in 2020 worldwide, ranking in 6th place, while in 2019 the website was 3rd.
Additionally, despite the large expansion of OTAs globally, direct bookings are still preferred by many travelers in some regions, especially Asia, where towards the end of 2020, their market share was close to half of the total online accommodation bookings market.