Dick Smith exposes foreign booking sites for extorting millions from Australian small businesses in the middle of a drought

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I have never been so angry!!

Please watch my video, where I expose foreign-owned multinationals for extorting millions of dollars from small, family businesses in Australian country towns in the middle of a drought.

In the video, I compare this “extortion” to the protection money paid by Kings Cross hotel owners to crime gangs in the 1950s.

This is not voluntary. Our small country family businesses are forced to sign up to these foreign booking websites, otherwise they will lose up to 50% of their business and be forced into bankruptcy.


Listen to audio podcast here:

Please read media release here.


  1. Well said, Dick. What some of the comments I’ve read reveal is that many people don’t realise that something that is legal can still be corrupt. We tumbled to this rort by Bookings.com a couple of years back, so now only deal with the motels, hotels and caravan parks directly. This problem is one we can fix, but let’s not try to politicise it.

  2. Well said

    1. HAHA Agree or not you have to give the Dick kudos for his enthusiasm 30% is a little rich.

  3. Good on you Dick!!! I had no idea. I shall go direct from now on! It is time the Australian Government caught up with the digital world and started making laws to protect Australians and their livelihood.

  4. More Yank bashing, yet these companies display the same creative initiative which explains Dick’s wealth, good on both. Booking.com is a Netherlands company, Agoda is. Wotif and HotelsCombined were Aussie companies that took the same 12% commission before their elected profitable sale. Lets not forget Sydney-based CheckIn.com.au which took a 15% commission before its shock liquidation inexplicably taking hoteliers’ 85% millions holdings not held in a trust with no criminal prosecution. Unlike European countries which banned the parity lowest rate as unfair to consumers, Australia ruled it fair and allowed by contract law. My guests repeatedly use these third-party sites because they selfishly earn points toward a future reduced rate elsewhere. Many of my guests also use these sites to claim and pay for fewer guests than arrive, forcing me to discover and somehow recoup the difference. So take the blame Aussies (me included) for this situation. My 20 yr. accommodation also struggles in a rural Qld small town and simply must rely on quality and price determination just as markets elsewhere. Though also again in drought, which is common, the timing has nothing to do with the issue which is simply how capitalism works.

    1. Quite the reverse.
      There is no excuse to charge these rates.
      It’s just gouging at its worst.

  5. Dick Smith, you are a well known passionate Australian business man, who could start a new Australia booking business, wouldn’t it be quicker and better for the Australian accommodation businesses you are representing, someone like you should be able to start an Australian booking business that keeps the money here. Once it is up and running, advertising this new company as purely Australian, it certainly worked for Wotif that Graham Wood started, surely with if what you say is it should do really well.

    1. Yes! I gave guests Dick Smith Foods for breakfast. There are lots of elderly Mum’s and Dads who depend on short stay accommodation to pay their bills so they are not homeless. The more jobs in Australia the better.

  6. Please name the “two billionaires” companies who are perpetrating this rip-off – and what other companies they have for a possible boycot.
    I always book my motel/accommodation direct.

    1. Hello jack..are you still base in Austria?

  7. GREAT WORK, Dick.
    Tell the Federal Treasurer.
    This is the scenario that has been going on for yonks.
    Taking money from the country places, nothing in return and country centres become poorer and poorer.
    On the top of all that, the jobs go, like say, Monto, losing its butter factory, its sawmill, railhead to Mulgildie ceased, and footy teams from six down to just one.
    Now how can a guy propose to a lady if he has no job, and he is broke to boot?
    The locals struggle to hang on, but for how long?
    And Bob Katter has noted that the manufacturing base in Australia needs a transfusion, too.
    Keep up the good work, Dick, there is hope yet with people like yourself.

  8. Dick, your message is spot on. However, may I suggest you shorten it considerably. You do repeat information unnecessarily. Punchy is better. I have found that I get the best price when I tell the business I know what the on-line sites offer. At least then, the business gets to keep the whole amount that I pay.

  9. The ACCC agreement with big international businesses preventing the small Ozzie businesses from advertising a better price than Trivago, Booking.com, etc is un-Australian if not criminal. Why isn’t our government let alone our politicians bringing this statutory authority into line?

  10. Hey Dick Try True Local app. They have all the motel numbers and so far as I know don’t charge for the listing

  11. … and something else to keep a bit more money in the merchant’s pockets: Pay cash. Don’t pay by card. Mastercard, Visa, Amex, Diners Club etc all charge the merchants an average of 3% of the bill and they are all headquartered overseas.

  12. Thank you for bringing this to the attention of the general public. Most people are simply unaware of the costs we, as owners of a small accommodation property, are forced to incur as a result of they way guests choose to book. What is even more alarming to me, is that Australian Tourism Data Warehouse (ATDW) and Visit Victoria have chosen to partner with booking .com and replace all our direct booking links on the state tourism website with a booking .com link. Thankfully once I contacted them and asked them to change our listing back to our direct link, they did so, but it is shocking that they would partner with this international site and encourage people to use them to book Australian accommodation. I have a screen grab of the email ATDW sent to all properties advising of their new booking partnership, but I cant seem to add a photo here. Please contact me by direct PM if you are as shocked as I am and would like to see it.

  13. Thank you, Dick Smith. My husband and I operate a small accommodation business in rural Victoria. We would estimate that nearly 70% of our bookings come via the online agents. Everyone is convinced that the online travel agents offer the cheapest prices. We try to educate guests to book directly, but they don’t believe us. Last week we had guests who sat in their car outside our business and booked online and then walked inside. They did not believe that they would have got a cheaper deal by dealing with us directly.
    Dick, are you aware that the ACCC made a ruling on 2nd September, 2016. (Release number: MR 158/16) allowing providers to offer a cheaper price than the online agents?
    Also we are unsure whether the companies are American based, as the accounts are issued from Holland in the case of Booking.com and from Switzerland in the case of Expedia.
    Don’t even get me started on AirBNB!
    Keep up the good work.

  14. Good onya mate ,true blue .

  15. Well Dick, I agree with you completely, however, I couldn’t help getting the feeling that your biggest problem with these booking companies is that they are American!
    We recently booked accommodation directly with the owner and got it nearly $200 cheaper for a two week period.

  16. Hello Dick, could not agree with you more I to have had enough of all these leeches sucking the money out of us and not paying TAX in Australia. They advertise on TV to make you feel guilty about not using there services, country towns are becoming ghost towns as local business has not got the money to employ local tradies, so they move out to. Like Dome café in Katanning WA once it opened three local cafes shut shop more people out of work.
    I always do my best to shop local and buy Australian made to keep the money here but all big business is interested in buying cheap Chinese imported crap to sell to us for huge profits, I went to buy my Legacy badge this week all made in China I asked why? the reply was we would not make enough money in donations if we had them made in Australia. I was not impressed.

    I am an avid supporter of you Dick, we need to get this country working again, made in Australia must be promoted just like book your hotel room with the hotel directly.
    and keep your money in the country as it keeps going around.

    Thankyou Dick.

  17. Good one , Dick Smith. Was wondering about this for a while , however when I stay somewhere out of my town , I always go direct to the Hotel or Caravan Park that I intend to stay with as to me , it is the best thing to do as in personal contact , with an employee at the place that I intend to stay at . Shared the video too.

  18. Hi Dick, I would love to help go 1 better than just boycotting these foreign sites. How about competing with them? With an Australian, national alternative site? We are an Australian company that enables holiday rental businesses to take more direct bookings and rely less on these 3rd party sites. But we are only small. We currently have 4 booking services using our system to keep direct bookings flowing in. However I also think our business model could really help here. Because we host each business’ stock, we have the ability to create a national service on top of their own direct sites – availability and rates are all accurate across all sites, which is what guests want. If you don’t charge an arm and a leg for the national site, the business owners get to keep more margin. You have the potential to compete with the big U.S. players if we can get some marketing clout behind the Australian site. Any Aussie who understands what you have just put out there would no doubt be drawn to and remain loyal to the Australian alternative. I’d love to talk with you more if you have time to reach out to me.

  19. Hang on, hang on, Dick, you’re getting carried away, again. As the man said “you can book direct with the accommodation provider”. That’s what I do Dick, when I’m going on a trip I work out where I want to stay, then go on to the Town/Shire information page and scroll the hotels or motels.
    Just been roaming the last week, stayed at The Coolah Valley Hotel in Coolah, Imperial Hotel, Bindaga, Hotel Dunedoo in Dunedoo, etc. I booked direct with all of them and paid cash, y’know, that coloured folding stuff?
    For those of you out there who are members of SSAA and any other shooting association avoid Wotif, their owner donates Millions to the Greens.
    And as for the annoying female flogging a booking site? She’s a bloody pain and I hope one day she gets laryngitis.

  20. Dick please consider altering your Call to Action
    You should have every Motel include on their home page with a link to the video. Then your CTA should be to have buyers to search for Motel’s in . This way they will come before the giants, in the search process.

  21. I have a program that would blitz all that, i just cant afford to spend the time completing the build unless someone is interested in helping. Owners keep their 15% etc and only pay a small yearly fee instead. And yes this what I have will rank first page Google everytime garenteed.

  22. What about just going to Whitepages online and ringing the business concerned, direct?

    Hang on a minute – is that too-o-o-o simple?

  23. Dick, I suggest you are 12 months behind the game here.

    A year ago – especially after the ACCC came out and said the Expedia/Priceline contracts (not to sell cheaper) were illegal – I could get a discount when negotiating accommodation.

    Usually, the ‘deal’ was about a 10% cut on the ‘published’ rate.

    Just returned from an extensive journey around Vic/NSW/Qld and the deals are off.

    Motel proprietors are not prepared to offer discounts. Time and again I walked away from a motel who refused to cut. When I said “you accept a 15% cut from Expedia/Priceline but won’t offer me a cut, why?”, the answer was nearly always “that is our business case”.

    Even the big boys are following the format. For example, a year ago Meriton offered it’s accommodation on its own website at about 11% better than Expedia/Priceline. No more, exactly the same price!

    I could go on.

    Sadly, the yanks have stitched up the game again!

  24. Onya Dick, A true Aussie supporting Aussies. No more Booking.com, etc; we’ll go direct to the motel from now on. This is a worldwide problem and we all need to wake up to it.

  25. Thanks for the heads up Dick. I have deleted the booking.com app from my phone.

  26. Wow! what a scam – about time you we had you running our country, PLEASE start a political party that’s for all Australians. Dick Smith for PM, nice ring to it.

  27. fantastic Dick!!
    thanks for letting us know!!

  28. A great revelation, well done Dick and I will certainly pass it on.
    It has to stop

  29. I agree with you Dick Smith. I have already notified my friends.

  30. I hear on the ABC this morning that when you use these online booking websites they want you to pay upfront and that money goes to the overseas company. After you have actually used the hotel and the electronic confirmation is given, the overseas company then pays the Aussie hotel (less the commission of course). What can you do? Do what the people of Wagga Wagga have just done, vote the self serving major political parties out of office. Do not say to yourself ‘I’ll do that next time if they don’t buck up’ – that time has long gone. Next election, in whatever seat you vote in, vote ‘independent’. Go for the person who will give the people what the people want. Then at the next election vote for an alternative independent. Politicians need four terms of office to qualify for a life long 76% pension. At half senate elections this is only six years. Don’t let them get qualifying time in. Can you imagine the saving to the national economy if we did not have to pay pensions to politicians? Vote for the independent pollie who will fix only a couple of things, it may be only incremental, but we have to start somewhere. Remember we are ruled not by the pollies, we a ruled by public servant applying the rules the pollies make. And life goes on, so lets change the rules the public servants have to work with.

  31. Just confirms what a caring fellow Dick Smith is.
    We need to get behind him and stop this explotation of our small businesses,
    Please watch the video and forward it onto anybody you can thing of including the policitians they are vunerable at the moment strike while they are down

  32. Denmark WA has its own accommodation website that doesn’t ask for any commission. It’s the old fashioned referral process built around a longstanding URL. It’s about supporting our small businesses in our community. http://www.denmarkwa.asn.au

  33. As a Senior Citizen I have been aware of these rip off search engines but.it needed somebody of your standing to hammer the point home. Let’s hope they watch your video and act on it. Even the pollie’s might realise this would be a vote changer!
    Good luck in your quest. Dave

  34. Good on you, Dick !! I didn’t know but somehow suspected that this wasn’t all it seemed to be. As soon as a middleman/broker becomes involved, someone makes a profit …. and it’s not the vendor or the customer. It’s us against the leeches while our spineless so-called “leaders” stand by and watch us being screwed every day on so many fronts. You’re trying to educate us, Dick, and I hope everyone takes it on board.

  35. Good on yer Dick!
    For many years I’ve been a rusted-on user of Booking.com (or is it .con?), but from now on will only use their website to help find the places we want and then contact the accommodation direct.

  36. Hi Dick, couldn’t agree more ,I hope your message gets to a wider audience . As an ex-serviceman (Navy) I see you every ANZAC day march with the simple sign on your chest saying “Thank You”. It makes my heart feel good. You are a good person !

  37. i am a strugling owner of a motel this is so true not only do thay take large cust thay also give there vip discounts and then take there comisioon of the origanal price so thay get more and we sign agreements not to expose or show agreements at some stages we can loose up to 50%

  38. Love your passion, Dick. A two-minute video would be much better to forward on.

  39. Good on Ya Dick !!!!, I’ve always called the motel/hotel direct to make a booking. To me it’s common sense……why pay a third party???, put all the money into the pockets of the small town motel/hotel and force the parasites get a real job.

  40. I have phoned motels directly when travelling in Australia, and they often quote me a higher price than I can find on a booking site. Why wouldn’t I choose my cheapest option ?

  41. It’s not just the evil overseas organisations. Whatiff has been making money in this area for years. They compound the issue further by donating mega dollars to the Greens, who promote job killing policies, often in country areas.
    The country loses out by the commission payments, and the money forgone is often used to promote further losses to the community.

  42. Then run for Parliament. You will ein by a landslide.

  43. You’ve Opened my eyes again.
    Last time I booked directly and EFT money to the owner for a Air BnB They were surprised, and I don’t know why. I’ll have a look now to see if they rip us off.
    Dick, unlike ALL others your view is Australia first.
    I now will use the international websites to locate the hotels then Google to contact them directly I promise online bookings I’ll do again.

  44. Be interesting and informative if you named and shamed the two big American companies you refer to. Some people in their comments have mentioned Booking.com, Tiago and Wotif. What are the ones we should avoid??

  45. Thank you Dick Smith from a regional motel owner.

  46. Thank you so much Dick what an eye opener. My family have always loved what you have done for us in the past. I will never use those sights at all. Keep up the good work for all of us Australians.

  47. B&Bs too Dick! Not just motels! Hundreds of established country and coastal town B&Bs like us are being squeezed by the big companies with their booking system trawler nets out everywhere. It has become almost impossible to find us without being diverted throught their systems. It is true that if you try to leave, you effectively disappear on google maps, all over the internet etc. I will email you as I have lots of interesting information about this issue.

  48. Hi dick, as a accommodation business owner, you are actually missing a few facts, my main one is everytime they increase their commission we increase our prices to compensate, in actual fact they are driving prices up for consumers

  49. Brilliant Dick!! Expose what is “really” going on in this country because u certainly won’t hear it from our politicians nor the ‘gagged media’ who r all self-invested with their own agendas.

    We have had a gut-full and for what it’s worth I send regular emails and letters to the scared ACCC and our weak politicians voicing our disgust at their lack of policing this rife corruption but as is quite obvious NOTHING IS EVER DONE IN OUR INTERESST! Soon Australia will be reduced to a Chinese $2 shop while they and other countries reap our best exported meat, fish and home grown produce…..how sad is that?

  50. why havent you run for politics you would certainly get elected as an independant and people might get interested in politics when they can see their vote count and things change, the clowns running the show now and the opposition have been corrupted by political donations which they use to decieve us in believing they are doing the best for the countries citizens, We need an independant who cares where this country is heading and has two major policies
    1 stop compulsory voting so people who care can make change
    2 ban political donations, fund elections via the tax payer so politicians work for the people and not be held to account by business donations

  51. I own a BandB in country Queensland , I joined Trivago last August as they made all these great offers of extra bookings. I didn’t get a single booking through my website only through booking .com so here is the thing I paid Trivago which is actually German , then I also pay booking .com a commission as well. When you sign up with Trivago in small print when you join it is up to you to cancel your membership, August this year my credit card was charged, I did a search for my Band B in my town the actual town and area is in Canada. When you search it only is in a radius of 20 km from your allocated town they had me located 40 kms from another town ,no wonder I couldn’t be located. I sent a couple of emails about the issue I had , they didn’t want to acknowledge there was a problem, until I said the magic word I will go to the press ! Another problem is Channel managers I can’t find an Australian company!!!

  52. Good on you Dick it is so pleasing to have someone like yourself speaking out I have always gone direct to book my accommodation as I am a hard case when it comes to Australia. The big one to me is the way we give away our resources to multi nationals that is Coal, Iron Ore, LNG to mention a few do you know Australia is now the biggest exporter of LNG yet Australians pay a very high price for their natural gas. Whose fault would that be our Politicians of course you know the ones we pay well & set up for life the ones that pander to the multi national & not their own people.

  53. Use them for research and then book direct.

  54. Good on you Dick Smith. Thank you for exposing this predatory and aggressive attack on our small businesses and communities. Its heart breaking to here of the inept performance of the ACCC and although they now acknowledge after the horse has bolted. Naive or Stupid?

  55. Dick, at the risk of sounding repetitive, you are a great Australian. We should utilise the likes of Trivago to research what is available in Mudgee then dump it and call our accomodation of choice direct.

  56. It is wonderful you have taken up this cause – I have never seen my husband so happy. We run a small motel on the coast at Lake Macquarie and he has complained for years that the OTA’s suck all of the value out of our industry.

    On another subject – how do I contact you with an idea for your hunt for the origins the Marree Man?

  57. Dick Smith you are right again. I wish I was able to stand up like you
    Please watch your back Dick

  58. I am a sales rep in Western Australia. I have recently been ringing the motels I stay at in Kalgoorlie and other place direct mainly because when I booked on one of the web sites I had an uneasy feeling that it was a scam site. I’ll keep ringing them direct.
    Hey Dick what about the way AMAZON is treating its employees at it facility in Melbourne. They are all migrants on casual contracts. I think they call it AMAZON because its a swamp???

  59. Yes support small businesd ! I have rang the motel direct and they wanted to charge me alot more than the website…..I ring the motel then check the website,and most of the times the motels want 30 percent more than website ! I just want a fair price,then I can support small business !

  60. Dick you are really a true blue Aussie & am proud to know you. I will certainly be sending this video right across my contacts. Keep up the good work you are doing.
    Lets Advance Australia Fair! good on ya Mate!!

  61. Good onya Dick, have seen these sites advertising on TV, luckily I’ve never used one and never will. If ever we do use some kind of agency, it will be Aussie owned and run for sure, or as we have done in the past, contact the business directly.

  62. I wish you’d run for Federal Politics Dick or at least start your own political party , you know doubt would get a hell of a lot of votes! Stand aside Clive and Fish and Chip lady Dick’s on his way!

  63. Well that was educational Dick! Quite often we have a girls weekend away at The Watsons Bay Hotel. Been doing it for years. I have sometimes booked through the hotel’s website because it is cheaper but will chase the cheaper price on the booking sites if it’s there. Knew the hotel paid a fee to them but I’m shocked at how much. From now on I’ll book directly with the hotel even if it is a bit more expensive

  64. It’s great to hear you’re passionate about this! This is a global issue I’ve wanted to tackle for many years having worked in tech and travel. The fact is there is a logical and balanced solution to topple these guys without having to try and quickly fail at outspending them on marketing. As with everything though some investment would be required to service an industry like travel effectively.

  65. I have been guilty of using these sites. Thank you Dick for opening my eyes. In future, I will be booking direct. When I finish here, I will be forwarding your post. Australia rules!

  66. I learnt about this last year from my friend who owns a motel in New Zealand. At the time I was an affiliate of one of the big players through my travel blog. (They don’t pay affiliates much) As soon as I found out about this I immediately canceled my affiliate account. Good on you Dick for your passion on this. I’ll be sharing with my social media community over the weekend.

  67. Hi Dick,
    These websites are a great resource. They offer detailed descriptions and photos of the facilities and rooms. I use them all the time to find a place to stay. Then I ring the hotel directly and get either the same or a better rate. Beat the multinationals at their own game Australia.

  68. As a motel proprietor Dick, truer words have never been spoken. Except Expedia I know is an American Company and I thought that Booking.com was a Dutch Company. Both are leaches.
    The Australian public knows the Wotif brand but would be surprised to know it is owned by Expedia having been bought out years ago.
    Guess what folks, we have to work our business on a certain budget to pay rates, insurance, workers compensation insurance, water, electricity, wages, repairs and maintenance, so the influx of these booking agencies means that our prices are inflated by the 15 to 20% we have to pay the leaches.
    Dick you didn’t mention that they not only take a commission on the first night’s stay but they take commission on every night that a guest stays even though it costs them nothing.
    They both now have a policy that clients can cancel a booking anytime within 24 hours without penalty. We do all the work for their clients without any compensation.
    I annoy the representatives of these two companies because they refer to their “clients” as guests. I tell them you don’t own any properties so look up the definition of guest.

  69. Great stuff Dick. Why aren’t the gutless ACCC being pulled over the coal’s.

  70. What you are saying is true. For years I have always rung the motel directly and they always appreciate it so much that they have always thrown in a meal or something, without even being asked.

  71. One of the problems that I diden’t see mentioned is that thease bastereds supply software that is suposed to help with the bookings to the small busineses. But it also feeds back info on there direct and other bookings to there web sites. This has consiquences in many different suttle ways for the small business.
    P.S. Please excuse my spelling.

  72. A very motivated speech but as you know wages are stagnant and the next step is that wages will fall and when the property crash happens that will gouge out the middle class and small businesses will go out of business.

    Australia is part of the global economy and cannot lock out multinationals or we will be punished.

    When the next global crisis occurs which is not far off then the government will freeze bank accounts and take citizens dollars from their bank account and have very little to go travelling.

    The only country to ban the internet to protect small business is France and i can’t see Australian governments banning the internet because Australians would be outraged.

    Disk Smith you need to start a consumer protection organization to expose internet misdeeds as you have doing now.

    Best wishes RUSSELL

  73. Agree

  74. Great video. I have been saying this for many years.
    My family have been in the short term accommodation industry for a few decades. In more recent times I have watched the small operators such as myself and my parents lose control of our booking streams mainly due to the introduction of priority paid ads above legitimate search results. This in itself has created the opportunity for multi nationals such as booking.com etc a way of out promoting small business. Small businesses alone cant afford to advertise against these companies. As a work around for our businesses we have created our own site that takes accommodation enquiries and directs them directly to business owners giving both the customer and the business direct contact. Early signs are good and show that customers are willing to book direct if they can navigate their way to the businesses. I think the accommodation booking cycle can come full circle and control can be given back to the owner operators if the right online environment is created.

  75. Good onya Dick Smith. So disappointed you are not in politics. Maybe then we would see some results for the aussie people and small businesses here. Shame on the Australian government for allowing this to go on. They should all be ashamed of themselves.

  76. Hi Dick
    This is just the tip of the iceberg mate!
    Start looking at Uber eats, menulog etc where 30% of the cost of the meal, plus a $5 delivery fee goes directly to these huge E companies.
    It’s a sure way if a food business to go out the back door.
    People need to stop using their phones for “information” that’s false anyhow……
    We need to go back to the old way of calling people directly Brit accomodation or food or even taxis!
    Anyway, that’s my two bobs worth!

  77. Just had a holiday in Noosa and owner told me it would have been cheaper if I had booked direct. Straight from the horses mouth so Dick is right. Lesson learned, thanks Dick.

  78. Hi Dick, I was not aware of these practices you have documented for booking Motels . My bookings will be directly to the Motels in future. no extra cost to the owners! I assumed that advertising the Motels were part of a deal done with Trivago, not highjacked so they are forced into paying commission. It is robbery!

  79. I signed up with Airbnb., not realising what was going on. They take 5% of my booking fee.
    It is also an American company, employing hundreds of people. How does one get known world wide otherwise? Anyway, thank you for enlightening me. Margaret Long, Gold Coast. Qld.

  80. That’s incredible, I travel interstate once a week & have been using the online booking system without even thinking about where the money goes. I feel ashamed that I was blindly sending money overseas without even doing some checking on the company I was dealing with. It’s funny, if we purchase something face to face we are usually careful with who we deal with & check to see if they are reparable, but with the internet we sometimes let our guard down & become very trusting & don’t do the things we would with a bricks & mortar business. As from today I will no longer buy from these websites & will post your message on our employee billboard so our 4,500 co workers can also see whats happening to our great country. Keep up the good work Dick & thank you for the eye opener

  81. We have the fix for this http://tourismconnecter.com
    It is developed, owned and operated in Australia. It helps smaller businesses with affordable online systems that help them create new income streams by partnering with others in their region.

  82. Well played Dick. Always admired your drive and patriotism. The answer is to use the web-sites to compare prices, select a motel, find that motel’s website or phone number and ring them directly

  83. I had no idea! Thanx for bringing it to my attention. In future will use the leech sites to find my accomodation then call the hotel/motel and book with them directly. Will also be passing on the message whenever the situation arises. Wish you’d had a go at being the PM Dick , you really do have Australia and Australians at heart. Good man!

  84. You are a great man Dick, I wish there were far more of you !!!!!!!
    It is about time the government pulls it fist out , and make all these foreign company’s pay the full amount of tax as do locals and back dated ! , and if they do not agree, then freeze their accounts until they do or kick them out [ but not before the tax dept. has its way with them ] as for the accc, well lots of bad apples there that are rotting away that should be weeded out, like most Dept’s. ” By the people for the people ” Also it is about time that all of these of shore accounts are BANNED .
    Keep up the fabulous work Dick.

  85. Hey this is absolutely outrageous. I have always wanted to book straight away as these companies get your credit card details and say they won’t charge till you get to the motel or hotel but it’s always charged straight away on the day of the booking. I have always wanted to pay over the counter and will try now come what may to find the official website of the hotel or motel I want to book with. I look for accommodation they recommend but won’t book with them. I had a terrible experience a little while ago trying to get a refund from one of the companies. The motel allowed me the refund and instructed the company to give it to me but it’s like trying to pull hen’s teeth. I gave up in the end and wore the loss. Never book with any of them again.

  86. Thanks so much for what you are doing for our democracy and society! The Australian people in their communities are very nice, it’s just the politcians who are screwing everything up! What a monkey circus! How do we get rid of these self serving people who are not caring for the future of this country?

  87. I have used direct contact for ages but use the booking companies to find the motel then call the motel direct and tell them I found them via the booking company but prefer to deal direct so they get all the money I pay. Every time I get looked after and a better price.
    Good on you Dick for exposing this racket.

  88. What would we do without you Dick Smith? Its almost against the law to be patriotic these days as we are losing our rights to object to being “done over like a ducks dinner” by foreign powers, invaders and opportunists. Thank God we have finally got rid of the Globalist, Elitist Prime Minister, Comrade Turnbull, whose allegiance was to the foreign power of the United Nations and its Luciferian New world order. But can we trust his Yes men to give us back our country?

  89. Dear Mr Smith

    I represent nearly 400 and growing small/med size accommodation providers across Australia standing up to our local and state governments over these parasites companies advertising “shared economies” and killing not only our businesses but taking away our homes and livelihoods and those we employ. Governments are opening their doors and inviting these tax avoiding slugs to join them at the table in creating new laws that effectively signs our death warrant. Allowing open slather on investors buying up tourism hot spot in a gold rush mentality all in the name of paying off their investment homes. In my region alone our current ratio of 1 in 10 holiday homes to residential housing, increasing to 1 in 5 in 2 years with current growth. This is not a “shared economy” this is an economy take over, and it is happening all over Australia. Mr Smith we need someone to stand up for us. We are just 1000’s of Mum and dad businesses, doing the right things Yet know one seems to care or realise that within 18 month to 2 years most of your small hotels, motels, guesthouses and B n B’s will be gone. Please speak up for us we need a voice people will listen too.

  90. This article caught my attention tonight and I thought I would share my experience with Dick Smith.
    I regularly travel with work and I’m away from home most weeks and I stay in a large variety of hotels and motels. I of course use the online booking websites. But I know how much they charge their clients in fees. So a lot of the time I will contact the hotel directly or book one night and then speak to the owner or operator when I arrive.

    However when I book offline or ask if there is any discount for doing so, the answer is almost always no. Some do and their encouragement for doing so ranges from 1% to 20% depending on the circumstances. There are no prizes for guessing which hotels I’m loyal to and make bookings directly.

    But most, 9 out of 10 offer no encouragement to book away from the online websites.
    It would appear that the website’s victims are doing an excellent job of protecting those that exploit them.

    I’m currently staying at a hotel as I type this. I have stayed at this hotel several times over the past few weeks. The owner gave me a card to book directly, but offers no incentive to do so. They actually discourage me because they want a credit card for the booking and charge me an extra 1.5% for the privilege.

    So while I’m more than happy to behave in a way that is beneficial to hotel owners and the Australian economy, those owners are not helping themselves.

    If the commission charged is 15%, then just placing a sign on the front desk that offers 10% or even 5% discount on direct bookings is going to encourage a more profitable behaviour and put at least some pressure on the booking agencies.

  91. Here is some good information on the subject.


  92. Dear Dick
    Way ahead of you Dick.
    Trouble is I’ve never found the accommodation any cheaper by ringing them !

    Dick for PM !!!
    (Seems easy to get in ! )

  93. This issue is far wider in the tourism industry than just hotels. It also applies to tour booking sites where the websites take between 10 and 30% from the tour operator and prohibts the operator discoun ting. Book directly with the business to keep the money locally. Thanks for bringing this to everyone’s attention

  94. thank you dick for standing up for us Australians. I just wish that the true Australian people finally get the balls to stand up for all the crap we have to put up with and say no more weve had a gut full. why do people winge and bitch about things but never do anything about it just bend over cause here it comes, All the people ive spoken to all agree Australia needs a bloke like you to stand up and let the truth be known. the poor working Australian gets nothing wile all the imigrants get what ever they want I could keep goin on about all the wrong things in the Australian government we need a bloke like you behind all true aussies keep up the fight dick you have my full support mate

  95. Dick Smith you truely are a national treasure. We need you to be more vocal and i feel as of late, you have been too quiet! Please continue to speak up and contest both sides of our broken political system!

  96. Dick they all do it, and they don’t even pay GST on the revenue generated from Australians using those portals.
    Strange though now EBay and Paypal charge GST on small purchases. I have asked for a tax invoice but none have been forthcoming.
    Another big con is Carsales, Small. Car Dealers are extorted by Carsales at $53.80 per enquiry. Everytime someone clicks on a car and sends their details the trader gets a bill for $53.80 this adds up and is on top of the monthly $400 account fee they charge. Imagine if it where all fairer? consumers in Australia would be paying way less for their car purchases, hotel bookings, online restaurant bookings etc.
    The leakage on small business to these digital enterprises causes financial hardship for all stakeholders, business owners and the community.

    And the federal and state governments don’t care. its easier for them to turn a blind eye and keep arguing about themselves.

  97. Hi Dick,

    Whilst I applaud the sentiment, your facts are somewhat not correct.
    Neither of the “big” companies you are targeting are US based.
    Expedia Group (expedia, hotels.com. Egencia, trivago, Travelocity, hotwire, wotif, trip advisor, and several other overseas sites) are based in Switzerland and Booking.com group (pretty much every other site you can think of including hotels combined),are based in Amsterdam in The Netherlands. You probably need to be sure your facts are correct.
    In our case we are charged 15% and 12% respectively and between the 2 sites they account for around 80% of our business. Yes, they’re a nuisance, but they’re also a necessity because THAT’S where our customers go to look for hotels to book.
    We’d much rather our guests book direct with us as we would much rather give the cost of the commission in the form of a discounted room rate than pay it to a multi national, but it IS a necessity because (as already mentioned) that’s where the guests go looking. So you’d need to get potential guests to get off those sites and get them to call the hotel/motel directly to make a difference- and THAT’S a big ask to peoples habits. But, hey…give it a go…we wouldn’t complain if you were successful in that task.

    Anyway, just wanted to ensure your facts were correct before you were to continue on this road.

      1. They register in places like Europe, Ireland etc to avoid company taxes and other liabilities placed on similar operations trading here in Australia.

        1. They are listed in the US, domiciled in low tax havens and the lowest consumer protections

  98. Thank you Dick Smith, I don’t think people know what happens when they book through Trivago & the rest of these companies. Will never use them again & will send this informative video to all my friends, will email and go on Facebook.

  99. Dick Smith, l love the fact that you care so much about our country and really mean it. I feel exactly the same way, I am so sick of overseas companies and people taking advantage at every turn to ripe us off and the very big fact that our governing bodies don’t seem to care. We are becoming the laughing stock of the world, and I like you are becoming very angry. I have done exactly what you are talking about, looked up the Internet to find accommodation and have discovered prices seem different. So I find a hotel they provide the name of, then I look up the hotel directly and make my booking. Usely a better offer, not always though. So my suggestion is look up their info then book directly yourself. In that way they provide you with with information but you don’t give them the benefits. I love your video but as suggested how can it be made a shorter version? Maybe it would be worth you (because of the great man you are), I think so anyway, to try getting a TV program to present what you are saying by interviewing you, say 60 minutes or A Current affair, that way more people might get to know what is happening. Thankyou for letting us know, Jenny

  100. Well Done Dick – could we start our own webpage as a service to aussie accommodation and stop booking search engines in their tracks.. worth thinking about – as an ex travel agent I always try and call direct so funds stay in the community .. unfortunately we bow to these big companies, the shorter video I will look for and send to everyone I can thank you Dick for your efforts.

  101. These US companies screwing Australian / Australian companies have been doing it to us for years and will continue on for years, because the young people of today have no clue of what their doing and the way they do it. Unfortunately people think their smart using these convenient apps and websites and dont really realize the undermining and the insidious nature of these web companies, Uber, Ubereats, Trivago, etc etc, theres loads of them, all pinching pennies from everybody and creating billions, i like to think that this would help, but really Dick we are too lazy and ill informed to save Australia from this US Hippocracy, you dont want to make deals with the US you will come off second best every time.

  102. I often wondered what was in it for these rorting experts. Thanks Dick for the info and I sure will pass this on to all my contacts.

  103. Another company to avoid is Jayride: they intercept bookings for transport from the airport you fly into. Other companies to avoid are UberEats, MenuLog etc are masquerading as ‘startups’. Similar to Booking.com and Trivago etc they charge the service provider a high per% while doing nothing for you. Avoid Jayride at all cost.

  104. Good on ya Dick, great video, heard this issue raised on Australia All Over. Sad to admit that I have used those sites in the past but will no more.

  105. Gee Dick, you are right again.
    Hmm community interest? If only Australia had parliament that was focussed on that.
    Seems as though you are the only leader we’ve got.

  106. Good on you Dick. I’ve just shared your video with my facebook friends. Keep up the good work!

  107. Thanks Dick! I have used these sites when travelling especially overseas, but NO MORE!
    I have always wondered how it works. Now we know just what a sneaky lot they are, especially in a time when people in small towns are struggling. Thanks again.

  108. Thank you Dick, good research. We will definitely support our local businesses directly. I suggest you re-instate the big NO sign behind you in your office, Cheers 73

  109. Parasitic business systems that provide no benefit and leave no legacy for the future. Priceline and Expedia own all the notable booking companies in the world. Two Billionaires as Dick says just racking in the dough for nothing.

  110. Good on you Dick you should be in Gov.

  111. Dear Dick,
    I thank you on behalf of all thinking Australians for your time and efforts in giving us insight into what is going on. As one of the older Australians, and one who is not very computer literate I wonder if you could organise some simple way for us to spread the word. The only way I know of now is to forward your emails to me. I will keep doing that, but if there is a better way please let us know (in very simple terms). I wish I could help you more, but at the moment am financially strapped. Again, thank you so much for your efforts in supporting this wonderful country of ours (well, at least at the moment!)
    All the best Dick,
    Frank Rogers

  112. “Money for nothing and clicks for free”. I am sure there are similar examples in other “referal” type sites on the web. Please keep reporting them when found ! Knowledge is power.


  113. You are a wonderful man Dick Smith I only wish you were primister I am forth generation farmer and I am discounted the way we are selling all our agriculture land to the Chinese the government calls it foreign investment that we need the government’s are such bad managers the only way that can try to manage the country is to sell every thing off our young people can’t even afford to buy there first now as all the foreign money coming in has pushed the affordability beyond most young families the government should be totally ashamed of it self they haue let down a whole generation of young families the government should be getting behind small business helping them grow employe more Australians and produce in Australia instead of importing the rubbish that’s made in China the government should get behind our farmers the best in the world help them to produce and export rather than sell our land to the Chinese them we buy back there contaminated food Australians need to sit up and take notice of what’s going on before it’s too late

    1. I got stung by Virgin airlines with a booking on line I thought was Ok but I got a $14 foreign exchange rate added on to my fare, asked the travel agent she said I booked through an agency.

    2. My suggestion – suggest people use online booking site for information but then go directly to the accommodation supplier to book, that way consumers get the information they need and the motels gets all of the dollars being spent. In Europe they passed a law to ensure that consumers go directly to the suppliers and get the prices advertised without including the online websites in the transaction.

    3. Well said
      It is very disheartening

  114. Dick, totally agree with you mate, and where-ever big money is to be made, the US companies have that down to pat at all cost. I don’t trust them in any of their industries from their car manufacturing (whom left Australia) to anything else. Thank you for exposing these rorts and keep this up mate. Cheers Garry.

    1. Garry just on the car manufacturing thing… the reason why they left was basically cost, 97 million cars made this year but Australia NEVER got above 400,000! Even Aussies don’t buy Aussie cars because they “bang for the buck” it’s lousy. Because we live 2/3 in 3 cities despite having the most land area per head of population, the price of land is 3X that of US and Europe. If land cost 3X and we sprawl from Sydney to Brisbane our cities are a JOKE and (naturally) so is our transport 3X the cost and so is a glass of Coke… probably more! Aussies need to value our own sovereignty. If’s NOT enough to have foreign companies come here and hire Aussies… we need Aussie companies to hire Aussies! Everyone thinks it’s impossible because everyone else thinks the same! WE have so much talent but investors only understand banks, mining and real estate… the Chinese understand our food that’s why they buy so much of it…

  115. this is a realt eye opener. Good spirit Dick! I tell my friends.

    1. I find that all those websites are useless anyway. If you book direct, you will get a better room at the same price advertised on wotif or any of those sites. Say Noosa for example, if you book direct you might get a ocean view room for the same price as an inland view on wotif. I have even been upgraded to a higher class room just by booking direct. Never use these sites to book. It is a scam, the hotel only allocate the not so nice rooms to these sites and the paying guest ends up losing out because you are not the most favourite class of guest by using these sites. Book direct like I do. It’s not rocket science.

  116. Love your cause and passion Dick and all the sentiment and reasoning behind it but you surely can’t expect an eight and a half minute video to go viral. You really could (MUST) do this in less than half the time for any chance of that to happen. If necessary – follow it up later with more info. But no way am I going to share an 8.5 minute video with any of my friends. Ideally, a snappy 1-2 minutes, at most, with feeds to more substantial back up info., please.

    1. Thanks Peter, we will release a shorter teaser tomorrow morning.

      1. Thanks for the info Dick,WHO are the two american multinationals?We have to know so we can take action and not just rely on you.All these companies have to be named and shamed.!!!! Too bad we have all these gutless politicians in power supposedly running the country,all they are doing is running it into the ground with the help of the CHINESE and AMERICANS. You only have to go to these motels ,especially near Sydney airport to see for yourselves they are run by Asians who can hardly speak ENGLISH and treat you like a second class citizen of OUR OWN COUNTRY, China be damned ,this is AUSTRALIA OUR COUNTRY but we are very fast loosing it all thanks to politicians and the very GREEDY few who only see the bottom line,THE ALMIGHTY DOLLAR.
        keep it up Dick

      2. Hang on Dick, lots of blokes in my family gave a lot more than 6.5 minutes to save this magnificent country.
        Is it so much to ask ???

        Make a half hour show for TV with audio for radio and Podcasts, it’s this quick snappy self gratification that commands people such as this to rush a result.

        If they won’t take the time to send your video, they won’t flick through to the independent trader.

        Keep the rant going.
        Thanks Dick

    2. Agreed first catch the attention…

    3. So let me get this straight – 8 & 1/2 mins is too much for you to share, even though you are sharing just a link? Pathetic people with attitudes like yours are the main reason Australian businesses are struggling! Get out of your comfort zone and make an effort. Your Grandchildren will be very much appreciative!

    4. A really great point. People have a short attention span, so quick and concise is the way for a video to go viral/be shared around.

    5. Well I’ve just shared it to my site. It takes more than 8 minutes to drink a cup of coffee,
      You read the paper for more than 8 minutes, You watch a footy match for much longer. It all depends on how much you care about our country. The mentality that’s killing it off is “she’s right mate.. It doesn’t affect me directly so it doesn’t matter. Go Dick. We will do our best to get it out there.

  117. I will now always try and book directly with the hotel. Im disgusted. Will share your message with as many people as I can. Thanks Dick.

  118. Good on you Dick I’m a Kiwi and I support you, as I guess the same thing is happening in every country time to put a stop to this extreme form of Corporate Greed! We all need to wake up and stop being so apathetic do what Dick suggests!

  119. Love you Dick

  120. Well done Dick!!! I’ll be forwarding this to everyone.
    Best Regards

  121. Thank you Dick,

    Much appreciated. I will certainly send on video that I received from a friend and take your advice to book direct.

  122. This is a worldwide problem for small family owned accommodation houses. We were in a small country town in Italy three years ago and the owner of this small accommodation house told us then that when we book through booking.com 20% (I think) goes straight to booking.com. The family business has to stay competitive and they have to use these websites to advertise their business or go broke. Keep up the good work Dick Smith.

  123. onya Dick! We need you to get angry for all of us! When are you going to front the Federal arm of the Sustainable Australia Party? Australia needs you to change the way we do things in politics. 3 years needs to be 4 and perhaps constitutional reform, an energy policy we can all believe in, A LEADER WE CAN ALL BELIEVE IN! C’mon mate, you can get it started and then just mentor the party ongoing.

  124. Good for you Dick. Like you I never gave it a thought. But this changes as from now. Take care mate & Keep the good work up.

  125. Thanks for enlighten me Dick. I see those TV ads regularly. How on earth would the average person know this. I will happily send this message on to those I know. I will also ‘maintain the rage’ at ebery oportunity.

  126. Hi Dick,
    It is reasonable to be angry with these big multinationals but there is always “2 sides to the story”. These companies are now reaping the rewards of “loss leading” the traffic to these big sites for years, mergers on mergers, much at the expense of the accommodation providers all round the globe.

    Often I try to look at booking accommodation on the website of the place itself but most of the time the deal offered there is significantly worse than what is offered on the big site.

    Also many places put you back through one of these systems they have integrated with. They are running all of their in house booking management through a system provided that offers them more functions while keeping their overheads down from that point of view.

    1. Hi Jaryd i think Dick covered the same price issue. You need to ring the hotel directly to get a cheaper price due to what should be realistically be considered “cartel” type behaviour where the small business is prevented from advertising cheaper on their web site via contract agreement.

    2. Hi Jaryd,
      The reason for this, is that in order to even get on to these sites, we all have to sign contracts that forbid us from “advertising” a price cheaper than what they display.
      That’s not to say we can do a much better deal if you pick up the phone and call your chosen accommodation provider…because most of us would love you to do just that. If we display a better deal on our own website, we run the risk of being thrown off the big sites and a lot less bookings would occur…so that’s why that is…just so you’re aware.

  127. Thanks Dick. I never understood that this was happening. No more Booking.com or Trivago from me. I will tell everyone I can.

  128. Keep up the good work

  129. Good afternoon Dick We have always tried to deal with the owners of holiday homes when we travel. Only on very rare occasions have we had to go through the web site and that was at the last resort. Have had no trouble at all dealing with the owners and we pay them on arrival. At least that way they keep all the money for themselves.

  130. We actually spoke with someone in ENGLAND when using one of these websites to book an overnight room at Sydney Airport. Couldn’t find a number to phone a hotel directly….
    Global Corporations are trying to control everyone and everything…evil + greed
    Following what Trump is trying to achieve and hope he succeeds in bringing down the ‘Axis of Evil’ cabal. Love your passion Dick…wishing you health and happines always…👍

  131. Thank you Dick. Thank you so much.

    I run a small family owned country motel. We have been getting extorted for years and the percentages are getting higher and higher in the favour of Booking.com and Expedia and the many other sites they own.

    My commission bill per month can amount to 3-4k. These greedy American companies make as much as I do out of my business. They do nothing to earn it yet we work 15 hour days 7 days a week.

    We pay taxes they pay nothing. We employ locals they do not. I seen this video and tears ran down my eyes. Thank you so much Dick Smith. You are a true Australian.

  132. Hi Dick This video is stopping and won’t play for us after 5 minutes – it just buffers even though other videos are playing okay for us on other websites. It’s right after you mention they have done a deal with google. You haven’t got to talk about the ACCC (as mentioned in the media release). Please could you supply a transcript or written report of the information in the video – especially after 5 minutes – because it would seem someone is trying to gag you!

  133. Seems so unfair. As suggested, check motels in a town on the various booking sites BUT then contact directly. Everyone wins except the extortionists!

  134. Dick,
    Keep up the good work, we are sick of the blood sucking multi-nationals

  135. You have to listen to this D.S video how right he is, support OZ,not Americans.

  136. Will never use them again.

  137. This is so true. For many years now I have adopted another approach. I look on the web and then I ALWAYS click on the ‘leech company’ website because when I do that it costs THEM money. I interrogate their website to find the accommodation I want, check the best price, then I contact the accommodation DIRECTLY and they ALWAYS match the price, sometimes they even offer a better price. If everyone did this it would not only keep the money in Australia, it actually costs the overseas billionaires money. Australia ONE, Billionaires NIL.

  138. Bless you Dick Smith…last true Aussie

  139. Weel Done Dick Smith.I have always booked direct to the Motel/Hotel for accomodation.
    The Australian Governmemt ACCC has created & agreed to this dis-honest practice and Prime Minister Morrison should leglislate to reverse this money laundering practice Question does the same apply when you book an overseas trip through a Travel Agent, Card agent,like Amex/Visa/City Bank ect.

  140. Good onya Dick. I use these sites to look at different motels, and then ring up the motel direct.

    1. Hi’ Dick, I have now this for sometime and always ring the motel direct after a motel owner told me down the beach side in melbourne. good on you dick, Still picking up your ozimite and p.butter whilst it lasts. Greta

  141. Good on you Dick for exposing this rort

  142. Keep it up Dick !! Please

  143. And meanwhile (based on 2012 profits), Amazon is making $66,240 per MINUTE

  144. I listened to that interview on Australia All Over and was very distressed about the plight of australian accommodation being ripped off by these conglomerates. I have been guilty of using those sites but now informed will never again. Thank you Dick Smith

  145. This was on the ABC checkout awhile back, its probably why the ABC budget was cut and they can’t make the show any more. My family use to love it, because they were funny and investigated things properly, with the help of professionals like Choice.

    They have cause the price of accommodation to go up by 15%+. I knew something happened a decade or so ago, because Wotif became expensive, why because they don’t actually discount anymore. Overall we a paying more. Unlike the ACCC here, in Germany it is illegal to contract the motels into not allowing them to advertising cheaper prices.

  146. Emails have been sent… goforrit Dick!

  147. Good on you, Dick. you have again demonstrated your passion for supporting local business and I am with you on that. You are also right in sayimng that we can not expect politicians to act for anyone other than firstly themselves, and secondly, for corporate interests who donate to them. Please support small Australian business and also those politicians who DO NOT accept donations from large corporations. Yes, there are still some.


  149. Why am I not surprised?? Large companies like these have been ripping us off for years. Something must be done to stop this.

  150. I working in the Advertising and Marketing industry selling Television Advertising Packages and I have heard about this from some of my Clients who did a lot of advertising with the company I work for in previous years in the last two years I have lost a number of my clients because of them having to advertising on these Web sites, many of them get nothing from these web sites especially “Trivago”. And because they are charged so much to put their business details on these sites they have nothing left to advertise locally. Mr Smith I totally agree with everything you are saying and the Government needs to be accountable for the loss of income for these small businesses, Oh I forgot, they do not care about what happens the Australian Businesses just so long as they keep sweet with some of these overseas companies. Already many businesses sold to Chinese Consortiums once they take over the business they sack all the Australian staff and replace them with their own Asian Staff many of whom are not fluent in English and nothing is being done about it, the same with a certain petroleum company “United Petroleum”, who a few years ago bought up as many petrol stations across Victoria and replaced the staff with Asians as well as people from India as they are an India owned company, no matter how many complaints were reported nothing was done and they were allowed to get away with it. The Liberal Government is selling this country to the highest bidder from Overseas and I do not know if there is anything the Australian people can do anything about as long as these Government officials are in there to line their own nests
    as long as they remain in office and the rest of the country they are not concerned about I’m afraid.

    1. The Labor Party are just as complicit in this.
      Don’t just blame the Libs. ALL politicians couldn’t give a toss. Neither one is less accountable than the other Denise. Lets keep it real and fair, OK?

  151. Would love to see this on facebook, just realized I dont have many of friends email addresses. Keep in contact by phone and fb messenger! Is there any reason we havent seen this on fb?

    1. It’s on our Facebook page, see here: https://www.facebook.com/dicksmithfairgo/

  152. Americans complain that China took their jobs, but they don’t recognise what American dot coms have done to the rest of the world. How many auction houses have been put out of business because of ebay? Or taxi driver’s by Uber, department store by Amazon etc: Like Dick said, it’s only going into the pockets of the chosen few.

  153. Loved your video & it is 100% correct, Dick exactly the same rotten scheme exists with the uber & uber eats gig economy businesses. Would love you to do a video for us who have in the Taxi industry suffered losses & tragically have had suicides because life savings & incomes have been decimated. Check out these US videos
    So like these travel websites, offshore tax sheltered corporations are employing staff on sham contracted slave pay,& stealing our businesses. The facts are these offshore billionaires are being subsidised by every citizen.
    Easy to understand why govt is complicit to ubers needs because uber outspends the combined lobbying budgets of Facebook, Twitter & Amazon. Uber is also under investigation by the US Feds for bribery of foreign govts.

  154. Dick, This has been going on now for many years. If you as a motel/hotel/ resort are no a member of one or on all of these sites that provide accommodation you will be out of business. You said 50% of Australians use these sites I say to you it is much higher. Small business are being held to ransom. If you book direct the owner can offer you a discount as apposed to booking on line with a provider as the discount they could offer goes to the multinational companies holding Aussy business to ransom.
    If you do not belong to one of these providers and pay to have your establishment up the front you are listed way way down and no one will book your establishment.
    Unfortunately we live in a country that is possessed with rules and restrictions but we are fleeced everyday as the tourism industry received kick backs from these big providers. It’s like UBER. A company with no assets but makes big dollars. The ACCC should have been onto these providers that extort money from businesses but no the government is so intent on making rules and regulation for the small businesses they are not interested in the extortion occurring everyday! A National Disgrace

  155. Once again you’ve hit the nail on the head Dick. Please continue to awaken the average Aussie to these type of scams that have such a devastating effect on hardworking Australian businesses.

  156. Email sent to Dick Smith. What a true Aussie.

  157. Dear Dick, Thank you for exposing this scam. We will go direct from now on. regards, len & Jeanette foley.

  158. Tottally agree

  159. Good on you Dick for helping expose these foreign leeches.
    As the current Guvt. is such a believer in trickle down economics, putting a powerful brake on this indefensible skimming would surely also help prevent the prevalence of closing shops in country towns that I increasingly see in my travels.

  160. Problem is Dick,,, MOST people don’t care!!! Just like Milk. People still buy $1/lt milk and don’t care. People cant wait for Costco to open, even though it will probably close down 3-5 locally owned businesses in the area. Coles, Worthless, BP, 7/11, Caltex own now probably 90% of the convenience retail market. Mum & dad stores, milk bars, small supermarkets are closing every day because multinationals who have their fingers in multiple pies are forcing them out. Dozens of jobs go while 1 chick runs a console in LACK of “service” station.

  161. Thanks Dick! Love your updates! We can thank our lucky stars we have blokes like you in this country. I have two young son’s and i run a small business so this was very relative to me. I won’t be booking via these sites ever again, that i can promise you.

  162. It’s just as well you are there to inform us and spur us on to think about our own great country.
    Keep up the good work Dick, you are an inspiration.

  163. Agree

  164. Good on you Dick, we have numerous problems in this country today and you have named one of the many.

  165. I will never use any of these ripoff booking web sites ever again. I will either use my web browser to directly find an accomodation providers website and or call them direct.

    Great work Dick, Keep it up mate.

  166. Dick, well done!

    But please, you need to get this out on national commercial TV.

    The problem is that these “Rip Off” companies advertise on the same channels where your revelations need to be shown. That even applies to SBS.

    At least 7.30 on ABC TV should be interested.

  167. G’day Dick, I totally agree…
    I have no interest in booking through Trivago, Wotif, etc.
    I have gone off Social media – with a extreme prejudice – because of the uninformed, extreme prejudicial narcissism it creates – and that people really can’t spell.
    Will send this out now…

    Left hand shake, mate.

  168. Good on ya Dick.
    Stick it to them good and hard. I’ll never use a booking site again.

  169. What a joke I’ve never heard of this. In future I will be booking
    my accommodation direct. Thank you Dick Smith

  170. Good on you Dick, thanks for exposing these extortionist practices and the limp ACCC.

  171. Search Engine Optimization S.E.O. – Google charge $ for ‘ad’ words.
    Have shared to FB… “Good Onya” Smiddy…

    1. Suggestion: maybe get Tourism Australia to set up their own website.
      Needs some thought but the money would be there to crest an Australian Hotel only website… no fees and could be included in a Tv campaign.

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