Travel.co.uk is to launch the first phase of its consumer website offering a combination of package holidays and dynamic packages.
Special features of the site will include the ability to search by flight duration, airport pairing, flexible dates and temperature in destination.
The service also enables consumers to view results in a number of ways such as on a calendar or map.
Hotel and resort descriptions include video clips on the top 2,000 hotels from Trailstream and TripAdvisor respectively.
Travel.co.uk managing director Ray Mason described the site as a hybrid between price comparison and online travel agent.
“We could have become another TravelSupermarket but I think it is a dying model. Suppliers aren’t happy with cost per click unless they know the quality. Or, we could have become an OTA but that puts you in conflict with existing clients.”
Travel.co.uk’s revenue model is commission based. The limited company is backed by Comtec’s Simon Powell and other external investors.
The service also provides consumers with a choice of up to four different booking options including direct with the operator, through a travel agent or a home-working agent.
“Each option will get their own profile. Agents and operators like it because they are able to talk a bit more about their company.”
Mason also said the plan was to ask consumers for feedback on their booking channel to build up Ebay style ratings on the agents.
Consumers will also be able to compare several holidays simultaneously on accommodation rating, weather, flights and what is included.
The site will host all bookings and deliver all the details and funds to the relevant agent.
“The customer journey is all with travel.co.uk. The agent can sell all the add-ons, the important thing is it is end-to-end and in one environment,” Mason said.
“Agents and operators get brand visibility, control of the sale and get to present their own profile. It should be incremental business and they have had to do nothing extra to get that sale.”
It is hoped that the travel.co.uk URL will help drive traffic to the site but it has also been built for search engine optimisation and the plan is to support that with pay-per-click campaigns.
The site was designed and built by Zolv with the SEO and PPC handled by Arcks.
A second phase of the site is planned for later in the year when flight-only, accommodation-only and add-ons will also be available.
A Google Maps tool will also be available, enabling consumers to view everything available in Spain on a particular date.