GAP Adventures gears up for social push

GAP Adventures, one of the world’s best known adventure operators, is to introduce a raft of user-based functionality to its website as it looks to challenge social networks such as WAYN and STA Travel.


The move follows the appointment of Dan Christian from Lonely Planet to become director of e-commerce at the Canada-based company.


Christian’s arrival is expected to spearhead the introduction of video and photo sharing as well as live blogs and trip planning facilities on the site.


Chief executive Bruce Poon Tip told Travolution the success of the site’s forum, The Watering Hole, had indicated that users were keen to do more than simply search for and book holidays.


Around 10,000 GAP members are active users of the service, which launched in early-2007, using it to ask questions and share travel advice.


In the past two months there has been a major increase in usage of The Watering Hole, with approximately 20,000 live threads currently running on the channel.


“Our goal is create tools and products which serve all our travellers”, Tip added. “This will bring a bigger and better community to the site.”


The operator has a sizeable presence in the UK, selling around 70% of its trips through the travel trade, including traditional offline travel agents and online wholesalers.


The company typically sells around 70,000 trips each year.



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