Australia News & Commentary

Dick Smith slams hotel booking websites: ‘It’s extortion! We’ve been conned!’

Dick Smith has posted a fiery video on Facebook urging Australians to stop using hotel booking websites because they’re ‘extorting’ Australian businesses.

According to Smith, multi-million dollar online booking websites are dominating search engines, forcing smaller Australian hotels and motels to either pay up or lose up to 50 per cent of their business.

“Millions and millions of dollars that should stay in our country towns is being shipped off,” Smith said. “It’s like extortion – it’s the same as extortion!”

“I rang some of these motels and I said, why would you want to be paying these huge American multi-billionaire companies 20 per cent. That might be all your profit.”

“And they’ve said, ‘Dick, we have to. Now 50 per cent of bookings come from these online sites and if we don’t sign up with them we lose 50 per cent of our business. We go broke…”

“We absolutely hate it, but if we don’t sign up and we don’t send them money, our business collapses.'”