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Directo Browser Extension Review: Is it Safe? Features and Alternatives

Directo is a browser extension that automatically detects the direct booking website while you browse on popular travel sites. Continue reading to find out its features, if it’s safe to use, and if it has any better (or worse, for that matter) alternatives in the travel industry.

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By Aistė

Published: Feb 14, 20244 min read

Directo Browser Extension Review: Is it Safe? Features and Alternatives

As we’re a browser extension ourselves (mystery unveiled), we like to analyze other browser extensions that enter the market. Blame it on the tiny little sense of competition or simple professional curiosity - we like to keep up with the news. You can find our take on another popular travel browser extension, Travel Arrow, here.

Here’s what you’ll find below:

  • How does Directo work?
  • Is booking hotels directly really cheaper?
  • Directo advantages
  • Directo disadvantages
  • Directo alternatives
  • TOP hotel booking secret in 2024 revealed! There’s actually no secret, just clickbait to intrigue you to scroll all the way to the end 😛 

How does Directo work?

Directo's idea relies on a popular travel hack that booking directly through a hotel is cheaper than booking through third-party websites. 

It’s a free browser extension that finds direct hotel booking websites, so travelers can bypass booking on such websites as Airbnb, Booking, Vrbo, and Abritel (these are the 4 that Directo works on). It automatically matches the properties on your favorite travel site to their own website.  

Simply put, you scroll, say, Booking.com, find a hotel you’d like to book, and Directo starts scanning the internet to find the hotel’s website so you can book through there instead of Booking.com. 

We installed it and gave it a try. 

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BUT. Before diving into the pros and cons of Directo, let’s find out for once and all…

Is booking hotels directly really cheaper?

While booking some hotels directly may really result in savings, this hack is more of a myth nowadays. Hotels can rarely compete with the big booking websites, especially if they’re listed there, as pricing restrictions by contract apply. 

We highly recommend not relying on this hack only and doing more research before making that final hotel confirmation (find the hacks we offer below). 

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Now, back to Directo. 

DIRECTO ADVANTAGES

  • Directo finds most of the bigger hotel chain websites in a few seconds. 
  • It has a reward system where you can get through different traveler levels (although we didn’t entirely find out what you can get with it?)
  • You can invite your friends and get +25 reward points for that. 
  • It doesn't pop up at all if it doesn’t find the direct hotel website link. 
  • Works on most Chromium-based browsers such as Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Opera, Brave, etc. 
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DIRECTO DISADVANTAGES

  • When the direct hotel website is found, Directo lands you on the main website, meaning you have to do your search (number of travelers, dates, room type, etc.) all over again.
  • The big hotel chains are easily found, but almost none of the smaller accommodation websites are found. From 12 Airbnb searches worldwide, it found only 2 direct websites. 
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  • Directo doesn’t work on other major browsers such as Safari, Firefox, Opera, etc. 
  • From the pop-up, it’s unclear whether you’ll get the savings. You have to go to the website, fill in all the information again, and double-check it yourself. 
  • Small yet very triggering thing: the pop-up can’t be moved around. When it pops up in the right corner of the screen, it stays there, covering some of the crucial hotel information (for example, hotel ratings on Booking.com). 

Overall, it’s a browser extension with an excellent idea, but with its current implementations, it’s just not there yet. While you will find the direct websites for the major hotel chains quicker, you’ll have to do the whole search all over again by yourself. Even then, there is no guarantee that you’ll get a lower price. 

So what do you use instead of Directo if you want to save not only money (that’s still the most important) but also time? 

DIRECTO ALTERNATIVES

The price differences between third-party booking websites & direct hotel websites aren’t THE BIG money-saving secret in 2024. 

 

The biggest hotel price differences (and, automatically, savings) lie in between different 

1) booking websites

2) devices, and 

3) countries.
 

Whaaaaat? 🥴 

Relax, we’ve got you covered. 

From our practice, these hacks result in way bigger & frequent savings than booking directly:

 

Alternative #1

Check hotel prices on different booking websites. The commissions booking websites apply for hotels vary highly, and that’s your best shot to score the biggest savings. 

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Alternative #2

Check hotel prices on different devices. Mobile and desktop prices differ a lot (especially if you’re booking on Booking.com). 

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Alternative #3

Check hotel prices in different countries. Did you know hotel prices vary depending on the country you’re booking from? Well, now you do. 

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Need more info? Read more about RatePunk & getting best hotel deals:

RatePunk ULTIMATE GUIDE: all travel browser extension + APP features explained
RatePunk REBOOKING: rebook your hotel if the price drops

Tricks OTAs are playing in 2024 to skyrocket their revenues (+ how to avoid being cheated)


 

Feb 14, 2024

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