New URL masking Guidelines 40

Please Read:

When creating your CNAME you will be masking the part of the url of your affiliate site, but you still need to include “templates/CID” in all your links (even the home page) for your affiliate site to work properly.[/note]

Due to EAN system upgrades, pointing your CNAME to the domain will no longer work starting August 23rd. It is absolutely imperative that your CNAME record points to before the deadline. Partners who do not update their CNAME could experience link breakage and consequently decreased revenue. Please refer to the EAN URL Masking Guide for details as to how your CNAME should be configured.

The Destination Guides pages reside on a different server and no changes are needed for CNAME records pointing to the domain at this time.

This is solely an administrative change within your DNS settings – so long as your existing CNAME alias remains the same the links on your site will not require modification.

About Jose Truchado

SEO Expert Jose Truchado has been working on Search Engine Optimization since 1996, he is a marketing coach, social media advisor, and entreprenuer founder of several successful start-ups within the travel industry. Jose has been providing SEO and SEM support to EAN partners since July 2009. Google+ profile: Jose Truchado on Google +

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40 thoughts on “New URL masking Guidelines

  • joey

    Q: I use godaddy for my domain and hosting. I have set up a subdomain for the affiliate site and will use the main to funnel traffic to the subdomain where the affiliate white label site will live;

    how do i do a CNAME for this?

    Here are the options at godaddy:

    Complete the following and then click OK:

    Enter an Alias Name — The subdomain name for the alias assignment.
    Points to Host Name — Your domain name.
    TTL — How long the server should cache the information.


    • Jose Truchado Post author


      Here are the steps you need to follow in Godaddy

      * Log in to your account at
      * Open the Domains tab and select My Domain Names. You’ll be directed to the Domain Manager page.
      * Click the on the domain you use for your affiliate site
      * Click More Settings in the domain Dashboard.
      * Click Manage under Total DNS/MX.
      * Click Add New CNAME Record. If you’ve already created a CNAME record for the address, click the marker icon under the Actions column next to the existing CNAME record.
      * Enter an Alias Name: here you need to enter the subdomain you are using for your affiliate pages (without including your domain, i.e.: for travel.your you only need to enter ‘travel’)
      * Points To Host Name: enter
      * Leave the TTL value to the default selection.
      * Click OK. In the Review and status box, you can see the results of your updates.

      Updates may take 24 hours to show, so you should check with that the redirection is working correctly after a day.

  • joey

    understood. but i have an ISSUE/Question.

    I already set up a VALID subdomain

    So when i try to do a CNAME like so:

    Alias: book
    Points To Host Name: enter

    I wont an error.

    I changed it to books and it did work.. So do i need the original subdomain i created or not?

    thanks for your speedy reply btw!

    • Jose Truchado Post author


      You don’t need the original subdomain, but make sure that any affiliate tool (search box, merchandising widgets, etc) or link that you are using uses the new subdomain.


  • qingrenjies

    would you choose probable to translate your web site into spanish because i’ve got difficulties of speaking to language, and seeing that there are not many pictures on your website i would like to read more of what you’re really writting

  • Jan

    My provider doesn’t allow CNAME changing, however they do allow DNS IP change ( A level). On my other white label sites this is no problem. Is it possible with expedia? Where to forward it? Thanks.

      • Jan

        Hi Jose, Thanks. Now I have my domain installed with –> –>

        However if you go to you don’t see my domain but the general website. How to solve this? Or is it only possible to put it on a subdomain and not on a main domain. Let me know.

    • Jose Truchado Post author

      HI, because the domain DNS is controlled by your registrar, there is no way to do this through our control panel, you will always have to create the CNAME DNS records through them

  • eugenio


    is it possible to remove the templates showing in the url??

    I’ve tried the guide for the cname masking but without the templates/cid it didn’t work well. /index.js keeps issuing different cid and also it goes to the travelnow website.


  • Ernest


    Is it possible to have the entire domain masked as the affiliate website? If so, am I only required to add cname? What about nameservers?


  • wenpo

    I have a top destination widget carousel and the link generated is

    Can we actually hide the “expediaaffiliate” or replace the above link to destination?

    I tried to refer my website to my friend and they noticed of the expediaaffiliate as a result they visited expedia website for a cheaper bargain (they assumed) rather than using my affiliate link. Could you please advise?

    • jjhuman

      Hi Wenpo, currently we have a bug with URL masking on these widgets. The fix should be released in one of our future releases. Once this is done you should be able to use URL masking by entering your domain in the CNAME field (it is on the page where you entered the hotel criteria).

  • salvador

    Hello. I’m desperate, I have two weeks trying to mask my url does not work.

    My page is redirected to a page with another CID Travel now and not mine.

    Please help me …

    Thank you.

      • JS

        Now I’m really messed.

        Trying to use chameleon white label.

        @Jose: you can’t use slashes in CNAME ( I can only use “”.
        Which means – anybody going to my domain won’t actually land on my affiliate page.Instead they need to follow in order to get there.

        Please provide proper guide for that.

        I struggled for half day to setup chameleon and it wont work for me. Also the caching time after you make changes in the admin are too long.

        • Jose Truchado Post author


          Sorry I didn’t explain myself correctly, what I mean is that in order to access your affiliate site you need to use the directories /templates/YOURCID after your CNAME, otherwise our system won’t recognise your site and will redirect the user to the default CID.

          For example in our site the CNAME is and the affiliate site is

          • Dave

            Hi Jose,
            Can you please clarify this? Do you mean that the cname should be ? I was under the impression that you couldn’t use / in a cname?

            • Jose Truchado Post author


              Yes, your CNAME will be the url that will substitute so it will be something like: (where you replace “cname” and “” with your own values), but your affiliate url will be If you use just your CNAME url our system won’t be able to track your bookings and they will be assigned to the default CID.

  • Jorge

    I do not know if someone can help me, I have been trying weeks to mask the address. My domain is with Nettfirms, their technicians even when I have send them the masking guide they say they not have idea how to do it. If I do
    reservations >>> it takes me to a generic page but I I do reservations >>> It does not work. At this point I have not idea what to do. Can Anyone help me please!!

    • Jose Truchado Post author

      Hi Jorge;

      Here is how you create a CNAME in Netfims:

      To create a CNAME record, please refer to the following:

      Login to your Netfirms Control Panel.
      Click Domains.
      Click Domain Manager.
      Click on the “+” button next to the domain you wish to use.
      Click the Sub-domain tab.
      Enter a sub-domain name in the Enter a Sub-domain field. (for example: res)
      Click the CNAME check box.
      Enter the CNAME of your host in the Hostname field. (this is where you enter
      Click Add.

      With this you will have created a CNAME pointin to, so the masked url of your affiliate site will be:

  • M M

    How do you add your url mask to the default search widget?
    Currently when a user clicks on a hotel search from my site it will go to travelnow domain.

  • Christopher Lehman

    Hi Jose, I have had good luck so far masking my domain I have hit a road block with Google Adwords-they suspended my account. The masking works great until the customer gets to the booking process then the url appears in the string. having this url change is a violation of Google-Adwords. I’m out of business until I get this resolved. Any ideas on how to mask the url through the entire booking process? Thanks for your help.

  • Carl

    How and where do I add the specific ‘CNAME subdomain parameters’ on Godaddy?

    I’ve already added the ‘Hotels’ for host and ‘’ for the points to part.


  • Ryan

    I have uploaded header and footer and it looks good. When you do a search for a hotel, the list come up, however, when you click “Select” to book the room an error page comes up stating “Service is Temporarily Unavailable” and gives this:
    Service Temporarily Unavailable
    We are sorry. Our service is temporarily unavailable.
    Please try one of the following options:
    Go back to the Hotels page
    Send us your feedback
    Now with reviews
    Privacy Policy
    Terms of Use

    How can this be solved?

  • ceyhun

    hi..can you help me about masking.
    my domain and hosting companies are different. i have create a subdomain.
    2.where i have to create the the domain company or hosting company.

    i create a cname record…name=res
    on the host company.


  • Sebastián E.

    Hi, I have a question.

    I have masked the url correctly with the explanations of this page. My domain is

    What’s the way to, when people go to the url: they go to my affiliate page?


  • Ronny O

    Hi I have been trying to mask my URL for the longest time. I am using

    Every single time I try it fails.

    Can some one please help.


    Ronny O

  • Dexterious

    The link is not redirecting correctly. When is used as the record, it works perfectly. But when any other used, it doesnt work. Most of the time, it goes to the What should i write as a record to connect to a campaign made in the chameleon?

  • Ludwig L

    hello Jose,
    i am trying to do it on my domain which is with , can you guide me the procedure. I bought an expensive domain for this program :(

    • Martin Macdonald

      Hi Ludwig,

      sorry, but the instructions vary for almost every domain registrar – and there are thousands of them! The company which has sold you the domain (in this case are the best placed to help you.


  • Frank

    Dear Ean,

    I’m pretty much finished my website, and I’m thinking it rocks. I’ve created a CNAME record as according to your instructions, so that, now points to

    However, everytime I use the form, the form redirects to a 404. Can someone take a look and tell me what I am doing wrong?



  • Jose Truchado Post author

    HI, to create a CNAME in Godaddy follow this:

    Log in to your account at by clicking the My Account tab.
    Under the Domains header, find the domain you’re using with Google Apps. Click (Advanced Details) to the right of this domain.
    Under the DNS Manager header, click Launch.
    In the CNAME (Alias) section, click Quick Add. If you’ve already created a CNAME record for the address, you can click anywhere in the existing CNAME record’s row to edit.
    In the new row that appears, enter the following information:

    Host: enter the CNAME you want to create, for example for enter hotels
    Points to: Enter
    TTL: Leave the TTL value to the default selection

    At the top or the bottom of the page, click the Save Zone File button.
    Click OK in the pop-up.

  • Fabian

    Hi Jose,

    I need some help, I create the cname ( pointing to and on the widget I modified the url ( and it works.

    but when the users change the url from “” to “” this is redirected to an unknown template and customer id.

    I have been trying to solve this problem, but I don’t know how to do it.

    You have an idea?