Australian hotel aggregator Trivago fined $32.8 million
Trivago fined $32.8 million in Australia for cheating users
A federal court in Australia has fined hotel search service Trivago A$44.7 million ($32.8 million) for misleading users, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission said in a statement.
The document clarifies that the service misled users about the prices of hotel rooms presented on the site and in television advertising.
In January 2020, a court found that Trivago had violated Australian consumer law by claiming that the service searches for the lowest prices for given hotels.
In fact, the algorithm was designed to return those hotel booking sites that paid more to Trivago for clicking on their links, "as a result of which users were not always shown the lowest prices."
Because of these recommendations, users overpaid about 38 million Australian dollars (27.9 million dollars), and Trivago earned 58 million in local currency (42.5 million dollars).