Who remembers the old days, when air travel was fun and exciting, when you didn’t need to buy a Business or First Class ticket to make the trip bearable? Sadly, travelling by air has become a chore; a grit-your-teeth and put-up-with-the-endless-queuing experience.
Expedia has just purchased Travelocity from Sabre for $280 million in cash. This comes after Sabre’s recent sale of lastminute.com to Bravofly Rumbo for $120 million. Following the Travelocity deal, Sabre CEO and president, Tom Klein, said, “Our primary focus at Sabre is to provide mission-critical software solutions to our global airline, hospitality, and travel agency customers – and to help them support their customers every day.”
The major online travel agencies, Expedia and Priceline’s Booking.com, seem to have the travel market sewn up, sucking in customers like celestial black holes. Their large market shares are driven by mega-million dollar digital marketing budgets and superlative technology.
you want to provide to the customer the customer would like to receive. Examining these ‘moments of truth’ will identify gaps between the experience the customer desires and the one actually received. It is these moments of truth that give the customer an opportunity to form (or change) his/her impression about your business.
After 10 years plus, I am putting my hobby website, travelfromHere.com, up for sale. Take a look and you will see that it is a very straightforward directory of websites aimed at UK travellers. It is rather like Yahoo! was in its first incarnation.
Some news in the last few days has reminded me of one of the subjects I was addressing at my World Travel Market seminar back in 2010. The news is that Thomas Cook has signed up with online reputation management company TrustYou which will use its online reputation management tool to monitor all online reviews written worldwide.
I make no apologies for getting back to the subject of mobile. It is simply the most important issue that is affecting travel right now. It is vital to get your strategy right and properly address this channel unless, of course, you are not bothered and are happy to watch the new entrants continue to flood in and steal market share. Two events in the last seven days have catalysed my thinking.
At the beginning of June, I organised the recent Distribution Best Practice Forum for Travel Technology Initiative – www.tti.org . Travel distribution is an increasingly complex subject. As the years have gone by, technology has not made distribution any easier.
I was chairing Travel Distribution Summit Europe 2014 the week before last. Over the two days, we covered a lot of very topical topics such as OTAs vs direct reservations, metasearch, mobile, social media and more. It was a very good conference with a high calibre of speakers from many different sectors of travel. However, it left me thinking that there is one area of travel that technology has yet to tackle well.
Nucleus, the brand, digital and intellectual property consultancy has been regularly surveying its clients since 2011, tracking the growth in mobile web browsing. The company’s latest survey highlights the continued move towards a mobile-first user experience. Mobile traffic has been growing at 42% year on year.