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Orbitz vs Trip.com for hotels Bookings

Orbitz Trip.com
Overview Overview

The first and most important thing to note about Orbitz is that it’s owned by Expedia. In fact, is basically is Expedia. In case you haven’t noticed the two company’s website are almost (but not quite identical). While originally started as a company to compete against Expedia, it was ironically purchased by them in 2015. As Expedia did with most of the other sites it purchased, Orbitz slowly became more and more similar to it’s parent, until what we are left with today is basically Expedia in a different skin, and slightly more aimed at the North American market.

Trip.com is backed by the massive Trip.com Group, the world’s second largest online travel group which also owns Ctrip, the largest online travel agency in China. With such backing and excellent buying power, Trip.com is undergoing a rapid worldwide expansion, and if you haven’t heard of them in your own country yet, it’s probably just a matter of time.
Features Features
For a full list of features we recommend you take a look at our article on Expedia as the functionality between the two different websites is almost the same. One thing that is different however is their loyalty program. Orbitz has one of the better loyalty programs in the industry, rewarding you with 3% of your booking price in the form of their virtual currency. Book with their mobile app to get an even bigger 4%. In addition to that you start off as a Silver member, but booking just 4 nights in a year will get you Gold membership where you can unlock perks like free breakfast and Wi-fi as hotels. Booking 12 or more nights within a year and you’ll be upgraded to Platinum which allows you to reimburse up to $50 for things like seat upgrades on flights, you get TSA Pre thrown in, as well as further potential hotel upgrades like room upgrades and early check-in. Trip.com’s hotel product is quite mature, and compares well with its main rivals of Booking.com and Expedia. It allows you to either prepay or to pay directly at the hotel depending on what you prefer, although it depends on the hotel. It features a relatively powerful search which allows you to search by city, region, landmark, airport and more although we sometimes found some strange results when testing. Where Trip.com falls down is by featuring a large number of the same room with different booking conditions making it difficult to work out what the best deal – for a great solution to this problem they should look to Expedia. Typically the differences between the options are that some include breakfast and some don’t, some are non-refundable while others offer free cancellation, and some are confirmed instantly whereas others have longer confirm times. In this aspect Trip.com is quite transparent, often other travel sites don’t have you how long it will take to confirm your room. Disappointingly, on the main search results page they only offer a single picture for each hotel, whereas the others feature multiple images or image sliders. While it’s not going to make a huge difference, these little features add up to a much nicer booking experience. Speaking of images, Trip.com is also lacking up-to-date and high quality images of a lot of hotels when compared to the competition. For hotels in Asia, Trip.com offers a reasonable range of reviews, but outside of Asia the reviews can be seriously lacking compared to the competition. When I say this, there’s actually a lot of reviews for each site in Chinese which are most probably bought across from their Ctrip brand, with a handy button to translate these if you require. Trip.com clearly marks rooms as either having free cancellation or being non-refundable, so they’re pretty good with transparency. Interesting, Trip.com offers what they call a service guarantee on their hotel bookings, which includes significant compensation if things go wrong like you turn up to hotel and there’s no room available for you. A cool feature that we’ve noticed lately on Trip.com is that you can set price alerts on a hotel, so that when the price drops below amount they’ll let you know through email – there’s not many other travel sites which offer this. Unlike a lot of the smaller hotel booking sites, almost everything can be done by yourself on Trip.com including cancellation, date changes and updating your personal information which is hugely useful and time saving. As with most of the competitors, you can filter by just hotels, or to include things like services apartments, hostels and villas. The location filters are also quite powerful, especially in Asia where they have the data to back it up. You can filter by metro line and even metro station, as by attraction or airport. One thing Trip.com doesn’t offer that some of the other major sites do is a Best Price Guarantee where they offer to match the price of their competitors.
Pricing & Fees Pricing & Fees
Like other Expedia Group companies, there are no booking fees charge for hotels. And also, unlike their flight offering which often charges a payment fee depending on your payment type, there’s no payment fees when it comes to hotels. The pricing, generally speaking, is exactly in line with Expedia. While you might find some special deals from time-to-time that are Orbitz-only, the vast majority of pricing is exactly the same, right down to the last cent. The pricing is generally speaking quite good across the board, although it’s generally possible to find a cheaper price on other sites if you look hard enough, however you always know that Orbitz will still be around tomorrow, unlike some of the brands where you can save a few dollars. You might have seen Trip.com frequently showing up of comparison sites due to their sharp pricing. Speaking generally, their pricing is extremely competitive with the other major players, although they tend to have the best prices in the Asia Pacific region, while Europe and the US are typically similarly priced to Booking.com and Expedia. Trip.com doesn’t add an extra service fees in the case that you need to deal with their customer service which is always nice.
Availability Availability
As with Expedia, availability on Orbitz is excellent, generally speaking. You’ll find the exact same hotels are available shared across all the Expedia Group platforms, which allows them to have good coverage in most corners of the globe. Naturally, their coverage is best in their home market, but is generally still very good elsewhere as well. Trip.com uses booking their own hotel contracting as well as that of some of it’s competitors. This means that once again it has excellent inventory in Asia (and particularly greater China) and reasonable inventory in other markets too.
Accessibility Accessibility
You can book hotels through Orbitz’ website, mobile website, or mobile app (both iOS and Android available). In terms of language options, Orbitz is very basic, only supporting English and Spanish, a clear nod towards it’s target market of North America. Trip.com is available on Desktop, Mobile and through their mobile apps for both Android and iOS which they market aggressively. Due to their parent company being China based (where mobile apps are almost the ONLY choice), they too deliver an excellent app experience. In terms of languages they are available in around 20 – much less than Booking.com, but still very commendable.
Payment Methods Payment Methods

In terms of Credit and Debit cards, Orbitz offers a wide variety of options. Visa, MasterCard, American Express, UnionPay, Diners, Discover and JCB are all accepted on their platform. In addition to that you can also pay via PayPal as well as Click-to-Pay. Unfortunately it doesn’t appear that their app or website offers any other 3rd party options like Apple Pay or Google Pay.

Trip.com charges no booking fees on all of it’s hotel bookings which is definitely a plus. They also don’t add credit card fees on top which can save you a few percent, although of course if you choose a pay-at-hotel room it will be down to the hotel itself as to whether or not you a charged a credit card fee. Payment is available in 20+ currencies and they accept all major credit cards, as well PayPal (major currencies only), iDEAL for the Europe market, and Apple Pay and Google Pay if that’s your preference.
Reputation Reputation
Orbitz is a long-standing company owned by one of the biggest travel companies in the world. This alone is worth something in an industry where new companies seem to pop up and disappear overnight. As with Expedia, their customer service has a reputation for being a bit hit-or-miss, but in most cases it’s unlikely you’ll have a to use them anyway, especially if you’re booking hotels with free cancellation. Being a newer player in the international market, Trip.com probably hasn’t built up it’s reputation the same way that more established online travel companies have. Having said that it’s mobile app in particular gets quite good reviews, and it’s TrustPilot score is also reasonable.
Customer Service Customer Service
As with other Expedia Group companies, Orbitz can be difficult to contact. While they do have a contact information on their website, they deliberately make you work to find it in order to reduce their call centre volume. If you search hard enough though you can indeed find a phone number you can call. Before that stage though you’re probably going to be directed to their chatbot. Fortunately, the chatbot is more than capable of taking care of regular tasks such as cancelling and changing your booking, so if you don’t require talking to a human this is a quick and efficient option. Trip.com offers customer service in a huge range of languages, however only the major languages offer 24/7 service. In additional to phone service, they also offer email support and mobile chat through their app or website.
Summary Summary
Generally speaking, unless they have a special deal at the time you’re going to book, booking with Orbitz doesn’t make a huge amount of sense and we’d probably stick to their parent. They do have a relatively good amount of “cashback” through their loyalty program when booking hotels online, so if you’re travelling frequently for work or leisure it’s a good way to eventually earn some free nights. Trip.com is absolutely a site which you should be considering if you thinking of booking a hotel. With massive buying power, there are some great deals to be found at times, and their mobile app experience is award winning. If you are looking at traveling in the APAC region this should be one of your first choice, however it’s definitely worth taking a look at no matter where in the world you’re traveling.