Enforcement Action against Expedia

Changes made to website


CMA found Expedia's practices potentially misleading to customers, including undisclosed fees, presenting some properties as discounted without indicating the real price, and better placement in search results for accommodations paying a specific fee.

Our analysis

The Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) opened an investigation into hotel booking sites, including Expedia, due to concerns that some of their practices may breach consumer law. The CMA found that some of the practices used by these booking sites were potentially misleading to customers. One of the concerns highlighted by the CMA was that consumers were not aware that accommodation establishments paying a specific fee to Expedia appeared in a better position in the "preferred" search results. This may have led to customers booking accommodation based on its placement in the search results rather than its quality or suitability for their needs. The CMA also found that Expedia was presenting "lower price available" on search results on its website to highlight specific offers where a lower price was available to customers who signed up for a member's program. However, Expedia presented many properties as "discounted," referring to a standard price provided by the accommodation provider without indicating that this price was the real price applicable by the property. This may have misled customers into thinking they were getting a better deal than they actually were. Another issue found by the CMA was that Expedia did not always include all fixed charges, such as local taxes, in the prices that appeared in the search results. This meant that customers were not getting an accurate representation of the total cost of their booking. As a result of the investigation, Expedia Group has improved its accommodation offer presentation to align with EU consumer law.


Expedia Group has updated their accommodation offer presentation to comply with EU consumer law, displaying accurate information such as promoted offers, payment influences on rankings, availability, total prices including mandatory fees, genuine discounts, and host type.


European Commission and national consumer authorities and Expedia group

Case number

Press release - 18 December 2020

Related deceptive patterns

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