Friday, February 23, 2007

We can learn a lot from tech-savvy Indians

Indian online travel portal Travelguru has inked a deal with Air Deccan, India’s second largest airline, to provide budget hotel bookings and holiday packages to the carrier’s passengers.

The partnership will allow Air Deccan passengers to book 2,500 hotels, including some 1,500 budget/ economy hotels, through its website. The hotels are located in 160 cities across India including all destinations that Air Deccan serves.

The deal also guarantees Air Deccan passengers access to the best available hotel rates.

Travelguru founder and CEO Ashwin Damera, during a panel discussion held at PhoCusWright conference last September, indicated that such partnerships were imminent.

Damera had observed that India is unique in that both consumers and the online travel industry are evolving simultaneously.

In this way, Indian online travel portals like Travelguru are perhaps better placed than their European counterparts to get more creative in how they distribute travel content.

Oh, the joys of youth.

This does beg the question where the European market is headed and how such creative partnerships could be used to build online brand loyalty.

And where will the GDSs fit in?

Some GDSs provide hotel content to some airlines, but there has been talk for ages about how they could expand this part of their business and use it as a selling point in their airline negotiations.

It would come in particularly handy for those really prickly airlines which are always moaning about their distribution fees (you know who you are).

Tricia Holly Davis, chief writer, Travolution

1 comment:

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