Published: Thursday, 19 August 2021 17:41
The online travel market in Southeast Asia is a promising market, a rapidly growing region with a digitally engaged and highly aspirational middle class that is currently underserved. The industry dynamics are ever-evolving with OTAs endeavoring to do things differently in order to maintain and grow their slice of the market. — Varsha Arora Skift Pro subscribers exclusive extract from the latest Skift Research report. Get the full report here to stay ahead of this trend.
Accelerated adoption of online services, fundamental shifts in consumer behavior, a conducive macroeconomic environment, and a fragmented hospitality industry led to a burst of demand for online travel agencies in the region. Between 2015 and 2018, online travel booking grew at 15 percent compound annual growth rate driven by airline and hotel bookings, to a size of $30 billion in 2018.
In this report we attempt to capture the OTA industry landscape in the region. With the help of our data partners, we present the traffic share of the popular online travel agencies (OTAs) in the main online travel economies in Southeast Asia, namely, Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia.
Furthermore, we look at the three core value propositions, scale, usability and pricing, of the dominant players like Agoda, Booking.com and Traveloka to understand what they are doing differently to maintain and grow their slice of the market. To give some sense of the financial health of the companies, we also incorporated a rough estimation of their 2019 revenues based on their traffic share and cardinal revenue models.
We published last week our latest Skift Research report, Online Travel Agency Landscape 2021: Southeast Asia. Below, we share a snippet of the report.
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OTAs of Choice and Their Market Shares
To get a sense of the preferred OTAs in the region, we referred to a survey conducted by Rakuten Insight on OTAs in the region in November 2020. The survey question was: “Which of these online travel agencies have you used before? (Choose all answers that apply)”
We then compared the actual traffic share, provided by our data partner Similarweb, of the top 5 preferred OTAs in each country in 2019. So, for example, out of the total traffic being sent to Agoda, Booking.com, Expedia, Airbnb, and TripAdvisor in Singapore, Agoda captures 30.1 percent of the top 5. Comparing the two metrics gives an idea of the ranking of OTAs in the selected countries in terms of popularity and to an extent actual usage.
Agoda, Booking.com and Expedia, in that order, were the three most used OTAs in Singapore according to the Rakuten Insight consumer survey. However, according to our web traffic analysis, while Adoda and Booking.com maintained the top 3 spots, Tripadvisor, although not a true OTA but a metasearch site which redirects consumers to another website where they can make the reservation, ranked No. 2 in traffic share (28.2 percent) and Expedia only made up 9.7 percent of total traffic.
In Thailand, the top three popular OTAs, Booking.com, Agoda and Traveloka, also turned out to be the biggest in the country in terms of traffic share. Although Expedia is more popular than TripAdvisor, the latter’s traffic share (13.5%) is more than Expedia (5.7%).
Same as Thailand, in the case of Malaysia, the top three popular OTAs, Agoda, Booking.com and AirBnB, also turned out to be the biggest in the country in terms of traffic share. Although Expedia is more popular than Traveloka, the latter’s traffic share (7.1 percent) is more than Expedia (3.7 percent).
Traveloka is undoubtedly the most popular and biggest player in Indonesia with a market share of 42.6 percent. In the second traffic spot, although Tiket.com is more popular, Agoda’s traffic share (18.9 percent) and Booking.com’s (16.5 percent) traffic share is more than Tiket.com’s (13.2 percent).
On balance, we can say that Agoda, Booking.com, and Traveloka dominate the OTA industry in the four Southeast Asian countries in focus.
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