“We urge you to hold hearings on the duopolistic practices of Expedia and Trip Advisor,” states the petition. “Since Expedia bought the host of vacation home rental website of Vacation Rentals by Owners (VRBO), they have bullied the small businesses of vacation home renters. They have sought to take over the control of our properties, and they have imposed a 9% to 12% booking fee on our renters.”
The petition was initiated by a group of vacation home owners who list on Expedia-owned HomeAway and TripAdvisor Vacation Rental sites and is led by Bunnie Riedel who wrote, “Not only does the petition call for the treatment of homeowners to be investigated but also the treatment of travelers.”
Directed at the Senate Judiciary Committee and its Chair, Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley, the petition urges the committee to hold hearings on the issue of collusion, bullying and antitrust tactics of these two companies toward vacation home owners.
Airbnb was not included in the petition, even though its fees and policies mirror TripAdvisor and Expedia.