Expedia Affiliate Network (EAN) has today announced a partnership with Travel Boutique Online (TBO), India’s leading airline consolidator, to offer its customers access to Expedia’s market leading hotel product.
The Expedia global hotel product numbers more than 100,000, including an extensive choice of one to five star properties, individual guest houses and bed and breakfasts.
The size and scale of the organisation enables EAN to offer the broadest spectrum of accommodation options at the best prices, both in popular and emerging destinations.
TBO’s is used by over 4,000 travel agents across 130 cities in India. The partnership with EAN enables these agent of offer customer’s access EAN’s extensive hotel offering through one convenient, easy to use, online platform.
Jens Uwe Parkitny, Managing Director, EAN APAC, comments, “The EAN solution has been tailored to ensure that it meets the needs of the TBO customers. It is a comprehensive solution that will deliver the potential to increase ancillary revenue for the agents that access it.”
Sham Nijhawan, Chairman, Nijhawan Group, said, “The partnership with EAN will help TBO provide a complete portfolio of hotel products across all categories of hotels to its agent base, which still primarily only sells air tickets.
“The partnership with EAN will enable agents to follow the logical booking progression by offering customers the ability to combine booking their hotel and flights. Hotel sales provide healthier margins for agents than air tickets and as margins continue to shrink in the travel trade, it will be very important for these agents to add new products like hotels and packages.”
Globally, acceptance of online buying as a tool for hotels has been a difficult transition from the standard offline system of calling the supplier.
Jens Uwe Parkitny, continues, “The concept of booking hotels` online is still relatively new in India, but the solution offered by EAN is flexible, easy to use and efficient. Agents can make real time bookings for their customers and assess all the options before committing to ensure they get the travel options to match their individual customer’s needs.”
“The user interface on the TBO portal to buy hotels is the same as most B2C websites”, says Gaurav Bhatnagar, Co-founder and CTO of TBO. “The agent only needs to pick the dates, city and category of hotels requested by the customer and they can see the multiple options available in a matter of seconds.
“Product information including pricing, location, features and cancellation policies are also freely available on the interface. Payment can be made and confirmation is available in a matter of minutes.”