Alibaba Group Holding’s online travel agency, Fliggy, has developed an alliance with 15,000 lodging services to help China’s independent hotels have more clients.
In September, the alliance started signing up hotels for free and now offers 600,000 rooms in Chinese cities, according to experts.
According to Fliggy, China has almost 1 million independent hotels which are over 85% of the country’s total count. Unfortunately, these hotel providers have less than 80 rooms and do not have a strong branding plan to keep tourism coming back again.
According to the vice president of an Hangzhou-based e-commerce company Fan Chi, in the near future, the alliance is looking to increase the quality traffic to hotels and offer technical support along with intelligent hardware.
Tourists can buy membership cards costing CNY39 (about USD5.60) for joining the online travel agency and receiving an 8% discount for stays along with many other benefits on the Alibaba platforms during the period of two years. The hotels where these cards are purchased can also gain commissions when they choose to stay at other membership hotels.
Fliggy, a state-owned Beijing Tourism group along with Shiji Information Technology founded Future Hotel, a management system provider. In 2016, Fliggy had CY50 million (USD7.1 million) in registered capital.