An online platform for pet-friendly accommodation has launched in the UK and aims to ‘shake-up the pet travel market’.
Passpawt.com lists more than 8,000 properties in the British Isles and is aiming to expand its portfolio of cottages, yurts, shepherd huts, hotels, lodges and boats to over 12,000.
It hopes to soon have 20,000 European properties, with many ready to book by the end of March.
The company has been set up by a management team including director Stewart Black, former business development director for Love Cottages and Blue Chip Holidays, and former head of sales at Homeaway Holiday Rentals. He says Passpawt.com has been created “to address the fractured nature of the pet-friendly accommodation market”.
Announcing its launch, a company statement said “Passpawt.com aims to become the confused.com of the sector, putting an end to the hassle experienced by consumers trawling through hundreds of websites, large and small, to find a ‘pawfect’ place to stay.”
It also plans to become a hub for information on travelling with pets offering tips, guides on places to stay and visit, news, articles, advice and special offers from its pet product partners.
Passpawt.com promises to offer accommodation at the same price as it can be found direct and is designed to that customer queries are dealt with directly by the property owner or manager.
The company’s statement also said: “Based on its business model, Passpawt.com believes it is in a strong position to become a dominant force in one of the fastest growing sectors in the UK holiday market; a sector in which 24% of the UK’s households own a dog and properties that accept pets enjoy up to 30% higher booking volume than non-pet-friendly properties.
Stewart Black said: “We believe in simple solutions that work well for all. For the pet owner, Passpawt.com provides the easiest route to the largest collection of pet-friendly accommodation in the UK, at exactly the same price that they could find by going direct.
“For the property owner, they get direct bookings and retain their relationship with the customer, enhancing the likelihood of repeat bookings and loyal customers. Owners will be provided with detailed information on guests and their pets, helping them make informed decision about bookings.
Property owners can choose a flat annual fee or a pay per booking option at 8% commission.
“In a market where over 240,000 bookings are made on pet-friendly properties in the UK each year, worth over £192m, we believe we have an edge that will help owners and managers of pet-friendly accommodation increase both bookings and profit,” added Black.
To mark its launch, in the Chinese Year of the Dog, Passpawt.com is donating 5% of its commission up to the end of March 2018, to Canine Partners, a charity that provides specially-trained dogs that help suffers of a range of conditions such as multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy and strokes.