- 1 how does expedia make money
- 1.1 How Booking Sites Make Their Money (And How You Can Save It)
- 1.2 Expedia and Priceline are the kings of the online travel world. How'd they get those thrones? We'll tell you how, and we'll tell you how to save money, too.
- 1.3 In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche
- 1.4 Can Khosrowshahi Save Uber from Itself?
- 1.5 How does Expedia make its money?
- 1.6 What kinds of fees does Expedia charge?
- 1.7 How To Win At Online Travel Market With Your Travel Agent App Like Expedia
- 1.8 Who Rules The Online Travel Market?
- 1.9 From Where Expedia and Priceline Source Their Inventory?
- 1.10 Possible Business Models For Your Travel Agent App
- 1.11 How Can You Differentiate Your App Offerings?
- 1.12 Customer Experience is Important, Keep Improving It!
- 1.13 Idea For Your Travel Agent App
how does expedia make money
How Booking Sites Make Their Money (And How You Can Save It)
Expedia and Priceline are the kings of the online travel world. How'd they get those thrones? We'll tell you how, and we'll tell you how to save money, too.
Planning a grand vacation to Europe or a tropical beach getaway has never been easier. With so many travel aggregator sites, like Expedia, Kayak, Priceline, and more, anyone can book a package at a bargain price. But if the customer is getting such impressive savings, how do the sites make any money at all?
Here, you'll find the answer to that question (and other things you didn't know about the online travel industry), pros and cons of online retailers, and some extra tips and tricks to find the best fare for your next vacation.
Online travel aggregators are big-time money makers, though they typically specialize in discounted fares. How does that work? Well, Priceline might seem like it hasn’t been in business since William Shatner stopped making their commercials, but the Priceline Group is still the largest online travel company in the world. How? They own Booking.com, Agoda.com, Villas.com, and Kayak.com.
Expedia also holds multiple sites. The company owns Hotels.com, Hotwire, Trivago, Orbitz, and Travelocity.
Together, Priceline and Expedia have a firm rule over the online travel world. With such dominance, they can command greater discounts from hotels and airlines who are happy to be associated with the travel giants.
Whenever a person books a room on their own, they get a typical rate. But, if a person wanted to book a huge block of rooms, they’d get a discount. Sites like Expedia and Priceline always book in large amounts to get rooms at a cheaper rate. Then, they can sell the rooms at less than the advertised price and still keep a little money for themselves. For Expedia, these kind of hotel bookings account for 70 percent of their revenue, according to Investopedia.
Another big money maker for third-party booking sites is commission. Some hotels offer up to a 25 percent commission on every sale. Why would they give away so much money? Well, many hotels don’t have the advertising budget to reach a national audience, and by working with a site like Expedia, with their “Best Price Guarantee,” that hotel can reach a wide array of customers. The customers will go through a site they trust (Expedia) and possibly book a hotel they’d never heard of. So, Expedia gets a commission and the hotel gets a customer they never would have had.
Lastly, the sites make their money the old-fashioned way—selling advertising! Priceline is especially adept at selling ads on all their sites, according to Investopedia. Just that little ad in the background as you plan out your vacation puts a little extra dough in Priceline’s pockets.
The Pros of Using Booking Sites
Since Expedia and Priceline have such a huge influence over the online travel market, many rental car providers, airlines, and especially hotels are willing to give the online retailers—and by extension, you—big discounts. If you search for a hotel on your own, you may only come across the major chains offering out their fully priced rooms. With travel aggregators, you can find hotels big and small and get the very best deal for your needs.
Sure, you could search every individual airline, all of your favorite hotels, and each rental car site on your own, but it’s a lot easier to do it all in one place. On Expedia, you can find a car, hotel, and flight all at once, based on your preferences. If you have minimal time for vacation planning, travel sites can make your trip a lot easier.
Travel prices are constantly changing. You’ve likely felt the sting of buying a flight only to see it drop $100 in price the next day. Sites like Kayak and Hopper offer price prediction so you can avoid paying too much for buying at the wrong time. In an small study done by the Wall Street Journal, Hopper’s accuracy was around 80 percent, while Kayak’s accuracy stays at about 66 percent. It might not be perfect, but at least you get an indication of future price fluctuations.
New Sites Are Bringing Even Bigger Discounts
Though Expedia and Priceline are the biggest names in online travel, they aren’t the only option. Sites like Skiplagged find drastically lowered fares by exploiting airline loopholes.
Let’s say you want to fly from New York to Atlanta. Sometimes, a flight from New York to Las Vegas with a stopover in Atlanta is much cheaper than New York to Atlanta direct. Skiplagged finds these cheaper flights. Then, you just get off the plane at the Atlanta stopover and enjoy your vacation. Skiplagged reports savings of up to $50 each way.
Now, you can only fly one-way on these flights and you can’t check any bags. But that’s the price you pay to save.
Skiplagged’s discounts were so threatening that Orbitz and United sued the then-22-year-old creator of the site. But Skiplagged triumphed in court and has been gaining popularity ever since.
Another new site, Scott’s Cheap Flights, is offering up international flights at huge discounts. The site reports finding a roundtrip flight from New York City to Paris for $260. Normally, that route costs anywhere from $490-$900. On Scott’s Cheap Flights, you’re sent an email with exceptional flight deals as they arise—the site itself doesn’t sell the tickets directly.
If you want to get really fancy, you can book one-way flights on a private jet at extremely discounted rates on Jettly. Since most jets fly their clients one way, you wind up with empty return flights. Jettly lets you fill those empty legs for much less than the average price of a private jet. CEO Justin Crabbe says Jettly’s cheapest flight to date was from New York to Boston for $800:
That is less than the cost of a first class ticket in some cases, and that is strictly because it's an empty leg where the plane is flying empty anyway. $800 for an entire jet? Not bad.
The Cons of Using Booking Sites
A customer can spend a lot of time searching Orbitz, Travelocity, and Hotwire, when really they’re all under the Expedia umbrella. Plus, Consumer Reports found some pricing anomalies. The researchers found a number of instances where they were given different prices for identical travel itineraries, even when searches were performed at the same time from different browsers. The questionable and unpredictable pricing is annoying at best, and costs you time and money at worst.
You Might Lose Your Seat
Getting bumped from a flight or getting to a hotel to find out there’s not enough room is a vacation nightmare. Sadly, your lower-priced ticket gives you a greater chance of experiencing one of these terrible scenarios. Flight attendant Celessa Dietzel told Business Insider that airlines often bump the people who paid the least for their tickets if a flight is overbooked. If you used a third-party booking site, that could be you.
A similar problem can occur with hotels. Though they won’t kick you out of your room, people who book with third-party sites are less likely to get upgrades and more likely to get worse service, according to Forbes. So, you may get a less-than-ideal room simply because you booked through a travel aggregator.
Customer Service Might Cost You
If you need to make a change to your reservation after booking through a place like Expedia, things immediately get complicated. You have to reach the site’s customer service, which may in turn just refer you to the airline or hotel itself. Travel expert and author Monya Williams worked with American Airlines for years, and she says that “most airlines have caught on to the fact that they are doing most of the customer service for these booking agents and are now charging $50 to $100 just help a customer with their seats or any changes.”
Since you’ve added an extra party to your travel reservation, it means there’s a greater chance of mistakes and miscommunications. Williams found that many customers don’t include a phone number with their flight booking when using third-party sites. So, if there’s a change or delay, the airline can’t get in touch with the customer. They arrive at the airport to find their flight has been cancelled. Not a good way to start a vacation.
Sadly, there are also horror stories of customers getting bumped at the last minute, getting a standard room when they paid for a premium stay, or showing up to hotels with paid reservations and no rooms. Priceline has a one-star rating on Consumer Affairs with over 2700 customer complaints. Though the major travel aggregators are doing their best to keep all their customers happy, more than a few are left unsatisfied.
Other Tips And Tricks Of The Online Travel World
Always Check The Airlines
Certain airlines, like Southwest, don’t show up on any travel aggregator sites. According to Keyes, you should always search Southwest to see if they offer a better price or itinerary.
Plus, Southwest offers two free checked bags per customer, a deal that no other airline comes close to beating.
You Can Change Your Flight For Free
Rishi Modi, founder of Canadian travel site Next Departure, gives a little known secret about changing your travel reservation:
Priceline and Expedia allow you to cancel your flights within 24 hours of booking. They'll issue you with a full refund, hassle free!
So, if you made a mistake or suddenly found a better deal, don’t hesitate to contact Expedia to cancel. Even if it’s been slightly more than 24 hours (but less than 48), they may still allow you to change your reservation, according to Keyes. It’s not guaranteed, but if you’re especially nice, Expedia might make an acception.
Using Native Currency Can Save You Dollars
Modi has another great, little known tip:
In some cases, booking in a different currency can lower the price of your flight by $20 to $30. For example, if you're booking a flight to China on Expedia, you can switch the country to China and keep the language [as] English, you'll see the price of the flight lower in local currency than paying in USD.
Google Translate makes this an easy option that often brings about a good amount of savings.
In individuals, insanity is rare; but in groups, parties, nations and epochs, it is the rule. Friedrich Nietzsche
If you have been watching the news lately, you might have noticed that Expedia (NASDAQ: EXPE) CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has been tapped to clean up the mess at Uber. That got me to wondering does Expedia make money and if so, can he repeat the performance at Uber?
Expedia sort of makes money but not as much as it used to. Back in June 2015, Expedia’s net income reached $816.82 million; that fell to $193.74 million in June 2016 and rose back to $329.36 million in June 2017. It looks as if Expedia is struggling to maintain what little income it can generate.
Despite the income struggles Expedia has reported steadily growing revenues for some time. The revenues were $6.104 billion in June 2015; they rose to $7.736 billion in June 2016, and $9.449 billion in June 2017. It looks as if Mr. Khosrowshahi is very good at growing business, not making more money. One has to wonder how that would help Uber which burns through cash like crazy.
Despite the low income, there are some good things at Expedia. For example, there was $3.781 billion in cash and short-term investments on June 30, 2017.
That’s a sign of a lot of float, and that float is growing. Expedia reported having $2.335 billion in the bank in June 2016; that means Khosrowshahi can generate float, which might be what Uber needs.
Expedia also reported $18.62 billion in assets and $2.204 billion in cash from operations on June 30, 2017. Cash from operations has increased significantly over the past year rising from $1.432 billion to $2.204 billion June 2016 and the same month in 2017.
Therefore, Expedia is making money, but it is not a value investment because of a ridiculously overpriced stock. It was trading at $143.62 a share on September 15, 2017. That gave the company a market capitalization of $21.78 billion and an enterprise value of $22.78 billion on September 15, 2017.
Investors also received a 30¢ dividend on August 22, 2017, which does not justify the stock price. Although it shows that Khosrowshahi is capable of running a regular company.
That makes Expedia a pretty lousy investment though it has a lot of float. Mr. Khosrowshahi has made it a moneymaking enterprise but not a good investment.
Can Khosrowshahi Save Uber from Itself?
The $200 million question here: is can Khosrowshahi save Uber from itself? The ride-sharing company’s ethical, legal, moral and public-relations crises are vast and now threatening its very existence.
Expedia is no comparison because it is a very different business. Expedia sells hotel and airline tickets. Uber sells rides in vehicles and delivery services. Expedia’s products come from well-established companies with strong brands. Uber works with independent contractors.
An interesting possibility will be that Khosrowshahi tries to change Uber’s business model to one of working with well-established brands. Perhaps delivering products from big retailers such as Walmart and Kroger, with which Uber has established relationships.
Another possibility is that he will try to establish relationships between Uber and established travel companies such as hotels and airlines. Adding Uber services to Expedia would also make a lot of sense. Since Khosrowshahi has a reputation as a dealmaker such alliances are a strong possibility.
Deal-making will have to wait because first Khosrowshahi will have to deal with the ethical and legal mess at the company. After all, Uber is under investigation by the FBI which is not a good start to any tenure as boss.
Although Khosrowshahi can bring some attributes that Uber desperately needs to the corner office. Those qualities include ethics and maturity.
“Dara is a very focused, disciplined adult,” Henry Harteveldt; a travel industry analyst with Atmosphere Research Group told Reuters. “He’s not a tech bro.”
Part of Uber’s problem is that the Silicon Valley ethos and sensibility do not translate will into the real world. The tactics that can help you attract hits to a website can get you into trouble with regulators fast. The “winner takes all” attitude that helps you build market share will simply make enemies at city hall.
Like Hercules, Dara has his work cut out for him because Uber might be far messier than the Augean Stables. One of the Ancient Greek strongman and Avenger’s famed Seven Labors was to clean out the infamously filthy stables.
Beyond that Khosrowshahi can always help Uber by simply making the best deal for its sale. Either way, somebody needs to do something because Uber is an interesting company with a good service; which has a lot of capacity to help people. If the right leadership can be found, hopefully, Dara will provide it.
Meanwhile, stay away from Expedia stock it’s overpriced and shows little potential for making serious money. Instead watch Uber and if see if Dara Khosrowshahi can do the impossible and turn it in a profitable and effective company.
You’ve learned about the basics of Expedia, but you may still have some questions about how it generates revenue. In this article, we’ll explain how Expedia.com makes money, so you know what you’re dealing with when you decide to book with Expedia.
How does Expedia make its money?
Expedia makes the majority of its money through booking accommodations in bulk at a cheap price, and then selling them to their users with a slight markup. Expedia makes a profit off of the increased margin, and also occasionally makes commission fees from hotels increasing their exposure through the Expedia website.
This is the same model used by many travel websites, as they often have the connections necessary to rent out entire blocks of hotel rooms and resort units due to their online marketing and returning user-ship. It also makes money through its many partner websites, which sell reservations in a similar way. It generates some revenue by charging fees for certain circumstances as well, though they avoid doing this in most cases, and so this does not make up a large portion of their revenue.
The Expedia website itself costs no money to use, and neither does signing up for an account. Merely searching for vacation accommodations on the website or app never costs money; you simply need to pay for the total of your accommodations when you confirm your booking.
What kinds of fees does Expedia charge?
Expedia itself doesn’t charge fees for booking accommodations, unless you violate their terms of booking. For example, you may be charged cancellation fees if you cancel your accommodations outside of the standard 24-hour window. Also, because Expedia is partnered with so many other travel accommodations companies, any of these services could potentially charge fees that you may not have been aware of when booking with Expedia.
Some examples of additional fees that users sometimes incur when booking accommodations include:
- Cancellation fees for cancelling an accommodation booking more than 24 hours after booking it
- Fees for extra or overweight baggage, on certain airlines
- Fees for using guest Wi-Fi in a hotel room
- Fees for excursions off of a resort
- Parking fees for parking at a particular venue
- Fees for meals at a hotel (such as breakfast)
- Fees for the ability to use facilities at a hotel such as a spa, gym, pool, etc.
Expedia Inc. (EXPE) has reached household name brand recognition. The travel company has grown from a small travel website to now selling everything from airline tickets and hotel rooms to car rentals and cruises. Expedia was started by Microsoft Inc. (MSFT) in 1996 and was quickly spun-off when it grew outside of Microsoft’s areas of expertise. The company was bought out in 2001 and spun-off again in 2005. Since then, Expedia has carved out a large market share in the United States and is inching into international markets.
Expedia makes money from a few sources, the largest of which is hotel reservations with 70% of its revenue coming from hoteliers. The strategy is simple—buy up a large number of hotel rooms at a steep discount and market the site as having the lowest price guaranteed.
Here is an example. Expedia wants to offer seven-night, all-inclusive vacations for two in Jamaica. The travel company contacts a hotel in Jamaica and asks to buy a block of 100 rooms at $50 a piece instead of their Best Available Rate (BAR) of $90. Expedia then contacts airlines and makes 200 seat reservations to Jamaica for $600 (with little or no discount). The package is offered to guests at a cost of $1,700 for two people. People booking on Expedia are happy; they have saved $130 off the list price just by booking with Expedia! Expedia shareholders are happy because they have only paid $1,550 for a package that they have sold to 100 couples for $1,700. Everyone wins. (For related reading, see: Top Cheap Travel Websites.)
Another way that Expedia makes money is through commission fees. By offering a best price guarantee, hoteliers know that customers will be more inclined to visit Expedia than to visit the hotel’s site directly. That, coupled with the fact that smaller hotels do not have the advertising budget that large chains do, means that getting your hotel on Expedia is the key to making a reservation. Users who go to Expedia will have exposure to a hotel that they would otherwise have not known existed. The company also claims that more travelers visit Expedia than any other website, and with deep advertising pockets, Expedia’s page views and site visits are likely to grow in the future. (For more, see: Alternative Travel: Discount Hotels and More Online.)
Expedia’s commission rates range from 20-25% – a figure so high that it makes hoteliers wonder if they are in fact operating a franchise under Expedia’s control. Here is an example. A hotel will offer Expedia ten rooms for reservation. These rooms are not sold to Expedia and there is no income guarantee for the hotel. The rate is set at say $100 and, if sold, the guest will pay Expedia $100 and Expedia will pay the hotel $75. The $25 that Expedia withholds is the commission fee which is used to provide customer service, marketing and seek new business.
Expedia benefits financially from being a leading global player in the travel booking industry. With a market share of 17% in online travel business in North America and a presence in over 200 countries, the company can command lower prices and monopolize the online reservation industry. Aside from being so well-known, Expedia loves to acquire smaller reservation sites to add to its ever-increasing repertoire of websites (over 130 in various languages as of Q2 2015 under 13 different brands). Often this is not even known to the consumer; for instance, a customer will visit hotwire.com, pay hotwire.com and receive a bill from hotwire.com, but all while transacting with Expedia. (For more, see: How Do Hotel Night Auctions Work?)
Q2 2015 results released at the end of July prove that Expedia knows how to make money. The reservation giant posted an 11% increase in revenues, a 19% increase in bookings and a 25% increase in hotel room nights compared to Q2 2014. The numbers sent the stock soaring over 8% in after hours trading, and if the company continues to grow its lucrative hotel revenue at the expense of its marginally profitable airline revenue, the stock will climb higher still.
How To Win At Online Travel Market With Your Travel Agent App Like Expedia
The competition in the travel industry is high. Today, people wants to access a lot of options to book trips and accommodations through travel agent app. In fact, travel apps like Expedia, booking.com, and many others are questioning the role of traditional travel agents for a while now.
Nowadays, online booking through a website and travel agent app like Airbnb and HomeAway are increasing. Airlines, car rental, and hotel chain brands have been developing their own websites and travel apps.
Moreover, such travel apps and websites now offer loyalty programs to convince customers to use their services to get the best deal.
In such competitive environment, What can travel agencies do to survive?
Generally, you might think of launching your own website or building your own travel agent app to enter the online travel market. But, remember, putting a website or launching a travel agent app isn’t some magic success pill. In fact, chances are you might not succeed.
Because by launching a website or building a travel agent app would mean going against the Expedia, Booking.com, and a bunch of others. Now this doesn’t mean it’s impossible. But, in order to survive such fierce competition, travel agencies must adapt and differentiate their product offerings.
For this, you must find out how online travel agent app companies operate, and try to discover their negative points through customer reviews and so on.
Who Rules The Online Travel Market?
Currently, the online travel market is dominated by Expedia and the Priceline Group.
Both of these companies own a number of websites and mobile apps. The Booking.com and Kayak is owned by Priceline. And, Hotels.com, Trivago, and HomeAway is owned by Expedia.
However, the Expedia is focused more on the U.S. market, while the Priceline Group is focusing on Asia Pacific and Europe. In 2015, Expedia acquired Orbitz and became the largest online travel agent in the U.S.
But, the Priceline’s net income still outweighs Expedia’s because of its larger international presence. In 2016, Priceline generated about $10 billion in revenue, where Expedia cleared only $8 billion.
Not only that, the Booking.com is much stronger than Expedia in the vacation rentals and apartment booking, which is a top lucrative market. So, in order to make up in this market against Booking.com and Airbnb, Expedia recently acquired HomeAway.
According to Sabre Travel Network, the online travel agency Expedia collects and aggregates data from thousands of travel service providers. By developing a website and their own travel agent app, it allows customers to look at and compare travel options.
Customers uses their website and mobile app to search for flights, hotel rooms, rental cars, and vacation packages. Expedia gets these customers by marketing and partnering with travel providers to get customers who they might not have been able to reach on their own.
Expedia was started by Microsoft as a small travel website in 1996, but it was quickly spun-off when it grew outside of Microsoft’s area of expertise. Then, the company was bought out in 2001, but it spun-off again in 2005. Since then, the company has carved out a large market share in the online travel industry.
Expedia makes money from a few sources. 70 percent of its revenue comes hotel reservations. To achieve this, they applied a simple strategy. They simply buy up a large number of hotel rooms at discount and market their site as having the lowest price guaranteed.
For example, suppose Expedia wants to offer a seven-night vacation package to Jamaica with all-inclusions for two people. The company contacts a hotel in Jamaica and ask to buy a block of 100 rooms at $50 instead of their best available rate of $90.
After that, Expedia contacts to an airline and makes 200 seats reservation to Jamaica for $600 (possibly with a discount). The company also makes a deal of providing food to their guests for the entire treat. Let’s say $250 for two people.
Now, the Expedia offers this package to guests at $1700 for two. People booking this package are happy because they saved their money by booking off on Expedia. The company shareholders are also happy because they’ve paid only $1550 for their package and sold it to 100 couples for $1700. This way everyone wins!
Another source of revenue of Expedia is commission fees.
Expedia’s commission fees range from 20-25% which sometimes make hoteliers wonder if they’re operating under Expedia’s control. However, most hoteliers knows that customers will be more inclined to visit Expedia than the hotel’s website.
For instance, a hotel will offer 10 rooms to Expedia for online reservation. These rooms are not sold to Expedia, and there is also no income guarantee for the hotel.
Now let’s say the rate of a hotel room is set to $100 on Expedia, and if sold, the guest will pay $100 to Expedia and Expedia will pay $75 to the hotel. The company withholds $25 as a commission fee for providing customer service and invests it for marketing and to seek new business.
Now, another important question:
From Where Expedia and Priceline Source Their Inventory?
Travel companies generally source their inventory by negotiating directly with hotels and with global distribution systems such as Pegasus solutions, Worldspan, and a bunch of others to book airline tickets, hotel reservations, vacation packages and various other services.
Expedia, one of the leading travel agencies, has the database of hotel amounts for over 4 million listings.
The GDS (Global Distribution System) was first originated by airlines. The American Airlines created Sabre in 1960 to make reservation accessible to customers through internet gateways.
However, the GDS system can be expensive to access. Therefore, the online travel agencies prefer to use GDS only if they ran out inventory in a given city. Generally, travel agency companies directly buy rooms for lower rates and receives 20-25 percent profit, where through a GDS, they get maximum 15 percent in profit.
Possible Business Models For Your Travel Agent App
Online travel agencies provide a broad range of services including hotel reservations, car rentals, vacation packages, and airline tickets.
Among all these services, Airline tickets are probably the most competitive and it doesn’t net much money for agencies as well. In past years, Expedia and other travel companies used to charge commission on airline booking, but then most of the airlines started selling tickets directly on their own websites. In fact, nowadays most people search on booking websites for airline booking and then buy tickets directly from the airline itself.
So, in order to monetize their services, online travel agencies generally have one of the following three business models.
In this business model, travel agent app generally acts as a middleman between customers and industry operators and makes a commission on every transaction.
Expedia’s commission rate is between 20-25% which is bit higher, but for hotels getting exposure on Expedia can be the only way to increase occupancy.
In merchant business model, all bookings are done on the agency’s own travel agent app or website. To operate according to this model, an online travel agency needs to buy large number of hotel rooms at a wholesale rate and then sell them through marketing at the agency’s rate.
The Priceline Group sells its hotel reservations according to Agency business model, while the Expedia follows Merchant business model, getting high margins in commission.
Advertising is another way for travel agencies to make money. Generally, travel apps like Hipmunk and Kayak earn by charging cost-per-click to OTA and supplier websites.
In simple words, Hipmunk and Kayak redirect their customers looking for hotel and flight booking to the hotel and airline websites and earn a few cents as a referral.
For an Entrepreneur or small travel agent who is planning to build a travel agent app, the advertising model is the most affordable for starting out.
Although, you’ll need to attract a lot of traffic to your site to sustain your business on only advertising model. But, alternative option is to offer vacation packages similar to Expedia to earn high profit in terms of commission.
You can use any of the above business models, but these business models alone can’t give you the success you want for your travel agent app. Moreover, we believe in doing things bit differently. Similarly, in order to succeed, differentiating your app offering is the key to win at the online travel market.
How Can You Differentiate Your App Offerings?
According to survey published by Euromonitor International, the travel industry will have the highest percentage of travel bookings through mobile apps by the year 2020.
This means, mobile market is where your prospects hanging out. But, since the market of mobile travel apps is just as competitive as the web, we suggest building an app first as it can greatly increase your customer loyalty.
Currently, Western Europe, North America, and the Asia-Pacific region are the largest markets for online bookings. This means, offering online travel service with a new travel agent app to them isn’t the best strategy.
Eastern Europe, Africa, and Northern Asia can potentially present a much better opportunity if these markets grow.
Another good option is to choose niche based on interests such as adventure, wildlife, sports or special events such as rock concerts, festivals, olympics.
Customer Experience is Important, Keep Improving It!
Today, people who are used to getting instant information on the internet and booking trips doesn’t care much about hotel or airline brands as they do about their budget.
Online travel agencies like Expedia cater to a mass market with wide range of options, but they sometimes lack in providing customer experience that clients of traditional travel agency expect. And, customer service is what the traditional travel agency is good at.
Moreover, looking around online for deals takes time.
The traditional agents search for flights and hotels for their customers. In addition, such traditional travel agencies customize and adjust the entire trip according to customer’s budget. And, if the customer has any questions before, during, or after trip, traditional travel agents are always there to help.
Idea For Your Travel Agent App
To win at the online travel market, obviously your travel app needs to standout. Not just in terms of design or user interface, but also in the service offerings, as mentioned earlier.
Instead of offering travel services at fixed prices and making a commission, you can provide a service where user can enter the budget and desired location where s/he want to visit and your app gives best deal among available hotels and airlines that fits in the budget.
This way, customer can save a lot of time of checking dozens of hotel and airline listings and calculating which fits their budget. With your travel app, you can make it much more simpler for them.
However, before proceeding further with this idea, it’s important to know the cost and time to develop the app. And for this, you can reach to a mobile app development company and discuss the idea and plan accordingly.
Since customers still seek for the advantages that traditional travel agencies offer, you can embrace such services in your travel app with the use of correct technology. And, if you liked the idea and want to discuss further, you can Contact Us for the same.