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Weekly round-up of digital travel and tourism news for January 28-February 3, 2013 

January 28, 2013  

Expedia.ca upgraded its mobile application that offers flights from more than 130 airlines. Download the travel application for your smartphone. 

HotelKhoj and Touristlink form partnership

HotelKhoj Online Pvt. Ltd., a hotel booking engine, teams up with Touristlink.com that offers budget vacation packages for India. As per the agreement, HotelKhoj would market the packages.

Via acquires TravelMasti

Via.com, based in Bangalore, India, acquired TravelMasti, a travel portal based in New Delhi, sells travel services, including holiday packages, for corporate, inbound and domestic tourists. 

Participate in “Biggest, Baddest Bucket List” to win paid trip, cash

Mydestination unveiled its Biggest, Baddest Bucket List competition. You can win a paid travel for six months and $50,000 in cash. Enter the travel competition.

 

Win free Travel and cash

Offline travel agents team up with OTAs

Srivastava, Moulishree. January 2013. Smaller travel agencies tie up with online rivals for survival. Live Mint & The Wall Street Journal.

The article throws light on survival strategies of the Indian offline travel agents who are losing business to online travel agents (OTAs). The offline agencies are teaming up with big OTAs to sell the online inventory. OTAs are roping in traditional offline travel agents to expand their customer base, especially in tier II and III cities. Get more information about the travel agents’ strategies.

Expedia® Media offers 3:1 media dollar match

Expedia® Media Solutions, the division of Expedia, Inc., offers 3:1 media dollar match for the tourism boards and destination marketing organizations (DMOs) of the regions that suffered due to Hurricane Sandy. This advertising and marketing support from Expedia would help the travel service providers to create awareness and promote the business.

Scoot and TravelPort sign agreement

Scoot, low-cost airline of Singapore Airlines, entered into an agreement with TravelPort. As per the agreement, content of Scoot would be integrated into the GDS platform of TravelPort. The agents using the platform would therefore be able to access the content on Galileo. TravelPort would offer IT services to Scoot.

borderFile supports The Concur T&E Cloud

borderFile, a software developed by Blackspark Corporation, is integrated with The Concur T&E Cloud using the API of TripIt. The software enables tracking the cross-border official tours of the employees. TripIt, a part of Concur, is a mobile trip organizer. The integration would standardize the travel data from different travel vendors serving the enterprise. The corporation is hosting a webinar on February 21, 2013 to illustrate the benefits of the integration. Join the webinar.

January 29, 2013  

OTT signs agreement with TravelPort

Online Travel Training Group Ltd. (OTT) signed an agreement with TravelPort Academy. OTT would sell GDS training modules of TravelPort. TravelPort Academy is the new online travel training portal set up by TravelPort.

OpenTable plans acquisition of Foodspotting

OpenTable, Inc., the online restaurant reservation service, agreed for acquiring Foodspotting for about $10 million. Foodspotting is an application that allows identifying and sharing information about the best restaurant dishes.

OTAs set up brick-and-mortar shops

Srivastava, Moulishree. January 2013. Online travel agencies step up offline push to boost revenue. Live Mint & The Wall Street Journal.

The article reviews the latest strategies of the Indian online travel agencies (OTAs). The agencies are setting up brick and mortar stores in the tier II and III cities to serve the customers who do not have credit cards, do not like booking online and / or do not have access to fast Internet. For instance, Yatra inaugurated seventy shops in the second half of 2012 and MakeMyTrip has set up more than 35 franchise shops since 2011. Read the full article.

SeatGuru vs. SeatPlans 

Dorman, Clive. January 2013. Can you trust online seat maps? Travel, Stuff.co.nz.

The author compares two websites that focus on seat arrangements in airplanes: SeatGuru and SeatPlans. The inventories and their features vary. For example,

SeatGuru contains configuration charts from more than 95 airlines, whereas Seatplans from over 150 airlines.

The SeatGuru inventory features American businesses. Asian airlines like Tiger Airways are missing from the inventory. Read the full article.

 

(The article continues after the advertisement…)

 

 

January 30, 2013  

OneTwoTrip Ltd. planned an initial public offering (IPO) for 2014 to compete with Expedia, Inc. and Priceline.com, Inc. 

Viator teams up with TripAdvisor

Viator.com, a leading tour search and booking website, teamed up with TripAdvisor. The partnership allows users of City Guides App and TripAdvisor to book directly the tours from the Viator inventory.

SutiSoft launches SutiTravel Mobile

SuitSoft, Inc. a developer of cloud software as a service (SaaS), launched SutiTravel Mobile, an online travel management solution, in the Indian market.  Tablet and smartphone compatible solution allows managing travel booking on the go. The solution features bus, flight and hotel search and booking engines.

Travel Tipper unveils Reporting Suite

Travel Tipper unveiled beta version of Reporting Suite for its RezTrip CRS. The suite allows users to analyze booking data more thoroughly. The suite can generate different types of reports focusing on geography, lead time, room type, rate type and other important parameters. Check out the reporting tool.

January 31, 2013  

Voyajo.com launched a quick, simple, powerful trip planning tool. 

February 1, 2013 

Qunar, a leading Chinese online travel agent, launched luxury hotel booking website. If you know Chinese, try the new luxury hotel booking portal

CHINAonline signs agreement with HBSi 

CHINAonline signed an agreement with HBSi to give access to the combined global market network to hoteliers and distributors. The network features scores of receptive operators, tour operators and online travel agencies (OTAs).

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