In what it terms an effort to further its electronic
commerce initiatives, Microsoft said
today it will make the American
Express credit card the featured card for purchasing travel services on
its Expedia travel site.
Financial terms of the marketing alliance were not revealed. The deal is
significant in light of Microsoft’s upcoming launch of its portal, Start,
which will feature content from its sites including Expedia.
Terms of the agreement call for users of Expedia.com
to be able to link directly to the card applications page on American
Express’s Web site. Microsoft said it projects an increase in site traffic
on Expedia.com, a surge in card-holder purchases, and growth in new
memberships for American Express. According to Microsoft, weekly travel
sales on Expedia exceed $5 million.
Today’s announcement expands a prior relationship between Expedia and AMEX.
Together the companies have co-developed an online reservations system for
businesses, AXI Travel (American Express Interactive). American Express is
also a member of the Expedia Associates
program, which provides links to Expedia-based booking services from American
Express’ consumer travel site.
AMEX cards offer services to online shoppers such as car rental insurance,
travel accident insurance, protection against accidental damage or theft for
items purchased on the card, and extension of manufacturers’ warranties. In
through its Web site, AMEX holder can pay bills and check account
Expedia.com provides online travel reservations, mapping and other
travel-related content. This latest agreement also supports a previously
announced credit card guarantee
service Expedia offers, Microsoft said. The service provides credit cards
Expedia.com with protection against liability related to unauthorized
charges, good up to $50,
on any purchases made on or off the Internet within the year after an
become an effective online draw for consumers, making it a beneficial partner
for American Express,” said Marla Isackson, vice
president of customer and product marketing for American Express.