Travelport, IBM and BCD Travel use blockchain to manage hotel commissions
08/22/2019|9:47:44 PM|Skift

Keeping track of hotel commission payments has often proved a difficult task, especially as more travelers book online while much of the hotel commission process remains manual.

Now travel technology company Travelport has joined with IBM and travel management company BCD Travel in an effort to fix that. Together, Travelport and IBM developed a blockchain solution to streamline hotel commission payments between BCD Travel and three hotel chains, Travelport announced Tuesday.

The solution tracks and accounts for commission payments owed by hotels for services booked through online travel agencies and stores it on a shared ledger. The goal is to provide an accurate and shared view of the booking status for all parties involved. The joint venture designed the blockchain technology to combat some of the challenges in the hotel reconciliation process, including the lack of audit trails driving escalations and manual data mapping.

“Blockchain technology applied to commission reconciliation has the potential to deliver real [return on investment] to both a travel agency and the hotel,” said Ross Vinograd, Travelport’s senior product director. “Traveler modifications at property, no-shows, and complimentary room nights are just a few examples that drive commission discrepancies which in turn generate escalations, cost, and revenue loss. Our aim is to put the life cycle of a booking on the blockchain, and we believe doing so will drive transparency, trust, and ultimately booking volume.”

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