Operator of the Expedia Singapore website ceases false claims on validity period of “Daily Deals” promotions
Singapore , 12 November 2020
Following an investigation by the Competition and Consumer Commission of Singapore (“CCCS”), BEX Travel Asia Pte Ltd (“BEX”), the operator of the Expedia Singapore website, has ceased its false claims and undertaken to not engage in any further unfair practices in relation to the validity periods of its “Daily Deals” promotions with effect from 12 November 2020.
In April 2019, CCCS commenced an investigation under the Consumer Protection (Fair Trading) Act (“CPFTA”) in relation to the “Daily Deals” promotions offered by BEX on the Expedia Singapore website at www.expedia.sg/dailydeals and through electronic direct mailers to consumers who were subscribed to BEX’s mailing lists. This self-initiated investigation arose out of CCCS’s market monitoring efforts. These “Daily Deals” promotions involved the listing of certain “Daily Hotel Deals” and “Daily Package Deals”, which BEX represented as “Hot deals for 24hrs only!” that would expire at 11.59 pm in Singapore time on each calendar day. At the end of the investigation, CCCS concluded that these false claims constituted unfair practices which breached section 4(b) of the CPFTA.
After carefully considering the facts of the case, including the fact that the breaches have ceased, CCCS administered a warning to BEX for its breaches and accepted BEX’s undertaking to:
a. Comply with the CPFTA and to take prompt steps to cease any unfair practices in breach of the CPFTA as it may discover in relation to communications (via any media) to consumers on promotions that can be booked through the Expedia Singapore website;
b. Prevent conduct described in section 4(b) of the CPFTA from arising in relation to communications (via any media) to consumers on promotions that can be booked through the Expedia Singapore website;
c. Ensure that promotions that can be booked through the Expedia Singapore website are not communicated to consumers (via any media) as being:
i. Available for a limited time period even though the promotion is expected to remain available after this time period; and ii. Valid for a specific time period where the promotion may cease before the specific time period expires, unless the limited availability of the promotion is clearly indicated in the offer terms and conditions; and
d. Co-operate with CCCS to ensure that it complies with the CPFTA.
For more information, please visit www.cccs.gov.sg/media-and-consultation/newsroom/media-releases/operator-of-the-expedia-singapore-website-ceases-false-claims-on-validity-period-of-daily-deals-promotions