Booking.com had a problem. To ensure properties listed on their site weren’t scammers phishing for credit cards, they had to physically verify each address—no small task for a site with more than 1.3 million listings in over 280 countries. And traveling across the globe, driving hours through ice and snow, just to verify an address that might be fake? Not fun.
The solution? Snail mail, baby. It was genius—they mailed verification codes to property owners, who then logged in to Booking.com to authenticate their addresses.
But there was a catch. A project of this magnitude had its own complications. It took 60 employees working non-stop around the world, just to keep up with the printing, packaging and mailing. It was costly, time-consuming and a logistical nightmare. Even at their fastest, they could only send out verification mail once a week.
“Actual bookers ending up at fake places dropped like a stone, and the number of fake properties going live dropped by 96-97%.”
Lob made this headache disappear by automating everything. Booking.com no longer needed even one employee slaving over mailing, and the once burdensome project became one less thing to worry about. Lob's automation meant verification mail went out instantly instead of in batches. By streamlining the process and slashing wasted time, Booking.com optimized their mailing system to run without a hitch.
But the best part, for Booking.com, wasn’t all the time and money saved. “Actual bookers ending up at fake places dropped like a stone, and the number of fake properties going live dropped by 96-97 percent,” explained Sagar Achanta. “That’s the real win.”
Lob did more than just stop scammers. With international addresses, even the slightest typo or missing bit of information poses massive problems for travelers. An absent unit number or missing street direction can throw off GPS coordinates or keep a property from showing up on Google Maps—a horrifying prospect for anyone visiting a foreign country. Lob fixed that too, verifying addresses to make sure every single one was correct and mappable.
Today, Booking.com’s customers know they’ll arrive at the right place. They won't get scammed, and their GPS won't spit them out in the middle of nowhere. And that's a game-changer.
Because, at its core, Booking.com is all about trust. And customers trust Booking.com, because Booking.com trusts Lob.