Skyscanner is a meta-search engine for travel services. Whether you want a flight reservation, hotel or rental car; Skyscanner will search among most providers and give you a comparison table of options.
When you select one and go to the booking company and purchase, Skyscanner gets a commission.
They are essentially affiliate marketers like you.
Skyscanner Affiliate Program
Types of products: Travel Comparison Site
Where to join: Commission Junction (CJ)
Commission structure: 50% Commission -$1 per app instal (cpi)
Cookie length: 30 Days
Payment Methods: Bank Transfer
How to Join the Skyscanner Affiliate Program
Skyscanner manages their affiliate program via CJ They also have lots of information for affiliates on their affiliate page at Skyscanner.com. It is one of the easier programs to join though you should have some topical relevance.
One other thing to be aware of is that there is a different program for most countries. The country program you are a member of is the only traffic you will be paid for. So as a US affiliate I would not get paid for booking traffic from other parts of the world. I have a travel-related site that has a few thousand visitors per month. Even with that small site, 23% of my traffic is non-US.
Skyscanner Products Services
Skyscanner is a leading global travel search site. They provide realtime comparisons for flights, car hire, and hotels. I like the site a lot and tend to find more flight information than at Kayak and others.
Not all companies are listed on any of these travel search engines. Kayak, for instance, doesn’t have many of the low-cost regional airlines. Skyscanner definitely has more but still, not all airlines are in the search result. It seems some companies like Kayak only include airlines they get a commission on. Skyscanner looks to have any airline that they have access to pricing. That still leaves many small discount airlines not covered.
Skyscanner Commission Rates and Rules
Skyscanner pays 50% of their commission to you for each flight car or hotel booked at one of their tarvel partners. You also get a $1 CPI for each referred visitor that installs their Android or Apple IOS app on their mobile device.
You must sign-up at CJ for the country you want to direct traffic from. You will only get paid on traffic that comes from your programs country.
Affiliate Tools and Support
CJ does a great job of providing tools and supporting banners and other ads for the affiliate programs they manage.
Skyscanner has more affiliate info on their sites affiliate pages.
Skyscanner recommends the following as being the best-converting links:
Skyscanner Daily Flight Deals — For the bargain huners in your audience
Skyscanner Daily Flight Deals under $100 — Traveling at the last minute and looking for the cheapest getaway.
Skyscanner Weekly Flight Deals Under $200 — So maybe you can spend a bit more than $100 how about $200 to get a little further away.
How to Promote Skyscanner Online
Clearly Skyscanner should be on travel and travel-related sites. It would make little sense to have them on your technology blog. You will get a few clicks, your content related to travel will not rank well and you get paid very little anyway.
Skyscanner will need a lot of traffic sent to them for any decent financial return.
With the low commissions they are not a good candidate for paid ads. They also have a number of reserved terms:
Protected Search Engine Marketing Terms
“AirfareWatchdog” “Airfare Watchdog” “BookingBuddy” “Booking Buddy” “CruiseCritic” “Cruise Critic” “FamilyVacationCritic” “Family Vacation Critic” “HolidayWatchdog” “Holiday Watchdog” “HotelWatchdog” “Hotel Watchdog” “IndependentTraveler” “Independent Traveler” “Jetsetter” “Jetsetter.com” “Onetime” “One Time” “Oyster” “Oyster.com” “SmarterTravel” “Smarter Travel” “Tingo” “Tingo.com” “VirtualTourist” “Virtual Tourist” “Skyscanner”
If you do have a travel site it may be worth including Skyscanner. Not every partner needs to have big payouts. What is most important is that it has big value for your audience. A feature article comparing Skyscanner, Kayak, Google flights, etc. might be very valuable to your visitors and therefore worth doing.
You should also be aware that Skyscanner has many rules for their affiliates:
Skyscanner Affiliate Marketing Rules
- All email marketing content and creative content must be signed off by the Skyscanner team.
- Any affiliate that has sent over 250 redirects from Skyscanner to a partner site without driving a booking will be deemed as fraudulent and will be immediately removed from the campaign and their commissions reversed.
- Skyscanner reserves the right to remove the payments to affiliates with no tracked bookings and the cases when the rate between bookings and redirects (redirects/bookings) is below 0.5%.
- Skyscanner does not accept unavailable, incomplete, broken, empty pages or pages that can’t guarantee satisfactory user experience.
- Skyscanner does not accept content aimed at one market, appearing on a page that is aimed for services or pages that have a different market in mind. Affiliates should only use advertising content that is relevant to the market in which their page or service is aimed at (example: content that is marketed in the Italian language but directed to consumers based in Japan).
- Skyscanner does not allow brand PPC (including mistyped keywords and domains) bidding nor retargeting campaigns on Skyscanner.
- Skyscanner does not allow Pay-per-click traffic.
- Skyscanner does not allow traffic from toolbars, extensions, and plug-ins, unless they have been validated and approved by Skyscanner.
- Skyscanner does not allow disruptive ad formats (like pop up banners), cookie stuffing, toolbars and browser extensions or any other sort of fraudulent activity that is not related to a genuine potential traveler.
- Skyscanner does not allow bots, all affiliates must be genuine users.
- Skyscanner does not allow publishers sending traffic to the last transitional page to the supplier site. Traffic must land on a page that is not being automatically redirected.
- Skyscanner does not allow non-transparent publishers sites and subnetworks.
- Skyscanner does not allow an inappropriate use of the Skyscanner brand (fares with errors and how to cheat partners).
- Skyscanner does not allow sites that are not aligned with the values of Skyscanner:Adult sites / sexual content.
Pros and Cons —
Skyscanner Affiliate Program
Well known company
CPI for app install
Low average commission
Only paid for country specific traffic
How much does Skyscanner pay affiliates?
Skyscanner pays 50% of the booking fees that they receive as a commission. They also have a $1 per app install (CPI).
How long do you have to make a sale from someone who uses your affiliate link?
Skyscanner has a 30-day cookie. As long as the customer purchases within 30 days of arriving with your affiliate link you will receive the commission.
What products are eligible for affiliate sales?
Commissions are paid on flights and hotels. There is also a small CPI of $ when your referred customer installs the Skyscanner app.
Does Skyscanner run its own affiliate program?
Skyscanner's affiliate program is managed by Commission Junction (CJ). CJ provides affiliate support and marketing materials.
Should You Become a Skyscanner Affiliate?
Skyscanner themselves are essentially affiliate marketers. They get a commission when someone books a flight, hotel or car from the actual operators. They make money by sending huge amounts of traffic to airlines and others. They make very little per transaction though. Just a few dollars. Now you come along as an affiliate of an affiliate you can guess that there is not much money left for you. The typical payout to you is between $0.010-$0.50 for flights and $0.30-$0.80 for car hire and hotels. Though the current earnings per click )EPC) at CJ is a bit over $5 that is still hard to justify content marketing effort, never mind paid advertising.
It is hard to get excited about $1 and fewer payouts. If you are a huge travel site with many many visitors … maybe. For most travel blogs though the amount of work it will take vs. the money being paid is not worth it.
You may still want to become an affiliate if you feel the association is beneficial to you. They are a well-known brand and have the marketing value of a partnership may make sense – just don’t expect much in the way of earnings.