Distribution

What the Airbnb surge means for UK cities

Apr 28, 2019 / Airbnb
Shutterstock
Shutterstock

Rooms available to book on Airbnb have rocketed in number in major UK cities, leading to fears of "hollowed out communities" as tourists flock in.

Data analysed by the BBC suggests that listings in Edinburgh doubled in three years, and shows a fourfold increase in spaces in London since 2015. City of Edinburgh Council has called for licensing and London councils want a registration scheme for hosts.

One result has been concern among locals and politicians of a squeeze on housing for residents, the behaviour of some visitors in residential blocks, and differing tax treatment for traditional hotels and guesthouses.

Distribution

Ctrip.com is increasing its foothold in India

Apr 28, 2019 / Ctrip
Ctrip
Ctrip

China’s largest online travel group intends to raise its position in India’s MakeMyTrip to 49 percent in a share swap deal with Naspers, the company said Friday.

Naspers offered Ctrip even more shares, which would have given it control of MakeMyTrip, noted analysts at Goldman Sachs, but Ctrip opted for a minority position to avoid regulatory scrutiny.

In 2016, Ctrip had invested about $180 million in MakeMyTrip, gaining it one board seat. With this deal, it will get Naspers four board seats. It now has five of the 10 board seats.

Data Protection

Two in three travel programs impacted by data breaches

Apr 28, 2019 / Data Security
Shutterstock
Shutterstock

Nearly 70 per cent of travel buyers say their travellers have been affected by a payment-related data breach from an outside vendor such as an airline, hotel or retailer in the past year, according to research from GBTA.

The survey of 144 US travel buyers also revealed that they believe the risk of fraud is growing, with two-thirds (68 per cent) saying travel programs face a greater threat today than they did two or three years ago.

Seventy-nine per cent of those polled view single-use virtual card numbers as effective at preventing fraud, yet only a fifth of travel programmes (20 per cent) reported current usage of this payment method.

Report: BCD Travel explores virtual payments

Distribution

Google expands tour search

Apr 28, 2019 / Google
Google
Google

Google has significantly expanded its Touring Bird activities booking app, growing the platform's reach from 20 to 200 destinations worldwide.

Touring Bird, which Google debuted last September, will now offer users the ability to search, compare and book more than 75,000 tours and activities from a variety of providers. The platform is available on mobile devices and desktops.

Users can view tour and activity options by destination, as well as build a customized tour package featuring each location's top attractions. Touring Bird also displays experiences according to interest and travel type, and results can be filtered further by specific activity.

Related: Google Touring Bird

Distribution

Hotels.com campaign explores 'hate-like' relationships

Apr 28, 2019 / Hotels.com
Hotels.com
Hotels.com

The company is playing off the envy experienced by seeing vacation photos splashed across social media.

The creative features spokesman Captain Obvious pointing out reasons why viewers may "hate-like" their friends’ vacation posts, before reminding them Hotels.com can circumvent this "hate" by helping them book brag-worthy trips.

The campaign includes five spots running in the U.S., three in the UK, six-second videos, radio ads and social media.

Digital Marketing

ITB Tech Talks: revenue management, distribution and personalisation

Apr 28, 2019 / OTA Insight (sponsored)
Shutterstock
Shutterstock

OTA Insight, together with Travel Tripper, hosted a series of Tech Talks in partnership with other leading hotel technology companies including Mews, StayNTouch and IDeaS.

These Tech Talks provided an educational outlet for hoteliers to get more out of ITB and looked at a wide variety of topics, including future-proofing hotels, revenue management, using guest data to gain loyalty, and parity performance.

OTA Insight's talk discussed: data efficiency in the battle against ‘analysis paralysis’; optimising guest segmentation and the value of distribution channels; and revenue managers being able to strategise instead of analyse.

Products & Services

How hotels can attract couples looking for romantic experiences

Shutterstock
Shutterstock

In order to sweep couples off their feet, you need to create a romantic atmosphere, offer truly attentive service, and go the extra mile with personalized experiences and thoughtful decor.

An intimate meal is often at the heart of a romantic getaway. Want to make a table at your hotel restaurant the most attractive option in town? Offer couples the option to have a candlelit dinner beside your pool, dress up a table in a tucked-away area of your restaurant, or offer them a personal dining experience on their bedroom balcony.

To enhance the loved-up mood, decorate their table with flowers, candles, or lanterns. Just try to keep things subtle - too much decoration can hamper the romantic mood. For parents traveling with kids, consider offering them complimentary babysitting for the evening so they can enjoy a quiet meal together.