Imagine those prices in the following scenarios:
- a family of four going on a week’s vacation.
- an older couple heading to warm weather for three months.
- a business traveler booking for two weeks in a big city.
It’s easy to see how quickly those prices add up and the earning potential you’ll have when you partner with the best hotel affiliate programs.
How Do Hotel Affiliate Programs Work?
Hotel affiliate programs pay commissions to affiliates who advertise the hotel’s products and services. The hotels distribute commissions to affiliates after customers complete their stay.
Here are some key components unique to hotel affiliate programs:
- You recommend a product or service from a third-party hotel business.
- Your audience clicks through text links placed within your content to the hotel business.
- The audience member reserves a product or hotel room.
- You’re rewarded with a commission based on the terms of the affiliate partnership – often 30 – 60 days, usually after the customer has checked out. Not after the initial purchase.
Unfortunately, hotels have a high cancellation rate – it’s unavoidable given the free cancellation policies often offered by hotel businesses.
However, hotel bookings are costly, particularly for extended stays of at least a week, averaging at least $100 per night. So even if you get cancellations, advertising hotels on your content pages is still one of the most profitable affiliate marketing campaigns.
Booking.com Affiliate Program
Booking.com is a well-known travel brand in online hotel reservations, claiming to generate more than 1.5 million hotel bookings daily. The website is available in 43 different languages offering more than 28 million accommodation listings worldwide with a unique selection of hotels, guesthouses, and apartments. Wherever your audience wants to go, you can use Booking.com to help them find the best place to stay.
The Booking.com affiliate program is available on the Travelpayouts Digital Partnership Platform, offering a 4% commission on the total booking price. At first glance, 4% may seem low, but with most one-night stays costing at least $100, multi-night bookings add up your commissions quickly.
Advantages of the booking.com Affiliate Program
- Earn 4% on the booking price – not just the partners’ revenue like other hotel affiliates.
- Most reputable Hotel Affiliate Program with high brand recognition.
Tripadvisor Affiliate Program
Tripadvisor is a widely-known website for its accurate trip-planning reviews. Whatever activity, restaurant, or attraction viewers are interested in, they’ll likely find it on Tripadvisor.
Most recently, though, the travel giant is branching into experience and hotel affiliate programs with two types of commission possibilities. For experiences, viewers who click into the “Things to Do” tab and make an eligible purchase on a tour yield an 8% commission for you.
Earning is even easier for hotels, as the viewer doesn’t need to purchase anything for you to earn a commission. Tripadvisor earns a referral fee when each viewer clicks to a third-party hotel reservation site. Every time this happens, Tripadvisor shares 50% of the revenue with you – no booking is required.
Advantages of the Tripadvisor Affiliate Program
- Earn money on two different actions within Tripadvisor.
- Completed bookings on hotels are not required to earn a commission.
- 14-day cookie lifetime for both actions on Tripadvisor.
Trivago Affiliate Program
Trivago helps travelers compare accommodation deals across 190 countries. It’s one of the most extensive web hotel search engines, bringing excellent customer service and strikingly accurate reviews. Offerings range from luxury suites to boutique hotels and budget hostels.
You’ll find the Trivago Affiliate Program on Travelpayouts with a 40% commission rate of Trivago’s click-out revenue and a 30-day cookie lifetime.
Advantages of the Trivago Affiliate Program
- Reputable brand with listings in over 190 countries.
- Lengthy 30-day cookie lifetime and a 40% commission rate on click-out revenue.
Agoda Affiliate Program
Agoda is another hotel affiliate program available on Travelpayouts with a high earning potential on average bookings of $200+. The 6% commission rate applies to the total amount paid, excluding taxes, making the affiliate program one of the most lucrative hotel affiliate partnerships.
The website has a wide range of options, with budget hostels listed alongside 5-star luxury resorts. The only downside is their 1-day cookie lifetime. So again, market Agoda similarly to Booking.com, where your viewers must be ready to book their stay at that moment.
Advantages of the Agoda Affiliate Program
- High average sale price of over $200.
- Great commission rates of 6% on total purchases.
Hostelworld Affiliate Program
Hostelworld is the premier search engine for comparing rates on various budget accommodations around the globe. The website features strikingly accurate reviews to help backpackers and travelers find the best available hostel in over 179 countries.
If your audience is young, in college, and budget-conscious, you can earn commissions using built-in widgets, deep links, and banners. The affiliate program offers a 40% of the revenue that Hostelworld receives from bookings.
Advantages of the Hostelword Affiliate Program
- Top booking search engine for budget travelers seeking hostels.
- Great alternative or complement to other hotel affiliates to diversify your content offerings.
Trip.com Affiliate Program
Trip.com is one of the few one-stop shops that made our list offering booking opportunities for flights, trains, hotels, excursions, and car rentals. Their best feature might be the advertised bundles, where wrapped packages are available for easy planning and high-average sales.
The affiliate program is based in China with heavy marketing in Asia, although you’ll find services worldwide. Commission rates vary depending on the service, maxing out at 5% for hotels.
Advantages of the trip.com Affiliate Program
- Wide offerings compared to other hotel affiliate programs.
- 5% commission rate on hotel bookings.
Super Travel Affiliate Program
Formerly SnapTravel, the revamped brand takes a unique marketing approach that works well to enhance bookings. Super Travel utilizes SMS, Messenger, and WhatsApp to send exclusive hotel deals directly to the consumers’ phones. The site uses more traditional search methods, but seems highly successful when sent directly to the consumer.
Advantages of the Super Travel Affiliate Program
- Offer your audience 30 – 50% off through messaging system.
- Earn a 5% commission rate on average sales of $120.
VRBO Affiliate Program
Since the well-documented end of the AirBnB affiliate program in 2021, few other competitors have stepped to the plate quite like VRBO. The longstanding company allows private residence owners to rent apartments, condos, homes, and rooms on a reputable platform.
VRBO lacks the high commission rate of other hotel affiliates but makes up for it with its sky-high average price of £2570 per booking.
Advantages of the VRBO Affiliate Program
- Earn money again off the vacation rental niche.
- High average price per purchase, making it a lucrative partner.
OYO Affiliate Program
OYO was founded in 2012 as a budget hotel search engine in India but has quickly developed into a reputable brand servicing worldwide destinations and high-end hotels. Commission rates vary depending on the hotel’s location, ranging from 4.5% in Japan, 6% in the United States, and 9% in Brazil.
Advantages of the OYO Affiliate Program
- High commission rates of up to 9% in specific destinations.
- Has country-centric search engines to service customers better.
Expedia Affiliate Program
Expedia is one of the most well-known travel brands, offering flights, hotels, car rentals, and more. Again, much like Trip.com, their bestseller might be their package deal services, giving affiliate partners a 3.4% commission on the total booking price.
Be mindful when partnering with Expedia, though. Depending on where you’re based, you must sign up with the appropriate partner to start earning. For the UK, you can find their affiliate program on Travelpayouts, while you’ll have to head to their website directly for other locations. You’ll still earn commissions off bookings worldwide despite partnering with country-centric programs.
Advantages of the Expedia Affiliate Program
- Partner with one of the most trusted brands in travel.
- Wide selections of flights, hotels, car rentals, and bundle deals.
Conclusion: Best Hotel Affiliate Programs
It’s hard to pinpoint the best hotel affiliate program to partner with as a content creator. It’s entirely dependent on the content you’re producing, where you’re producing it, and who you’re creating it for.
Generally, mixing and matching is an excellent approach to cover all markets you might be advertising to. One of the best ways to have all the best hotel affiliate programs in one place is to join the Travelpayouts Digital Partnership Platform. The Travelpayouts accommodation catalog features top travel brands, including many of the best hotel affiliate programs! Check them out!