Off The Radar: Why Airlines On Travel Search Engines Are Going Missing

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel Deals

Looking for the best airfares on Expedia or Orbitz? You won’t find them from American Airlines. Meanwhile, Delta fares are gone from other online travel search engines like CheapOAir.com and Vegas.com. A brewing battle between airlines and fare comparison services is to blame.

Last week, the ongoing saga between the airlines and popular OTA sites and GDS platforms (Orbitz, Sabre) reached a tipping point, when American Airlines pulled its fares from Orbitz.com, refusing to pay the fees demanded by the travel search giant for listing its fares.

Where Airfares Have Gone Why

Travel search engines – also called online travel agencies or OTAs, which allow you to book flights through them – have long not had fares from some airlines such as Southwest or JetBlue which have preferred to sell direct to consumers. Travel meta-search engines search against published airfares and send you to book directly with the airline.

Over the past few weeks, both Delta and American have made moves to pull out of larger OTAs, to go direct to consumers. These sudden moves underscore the efforts major carriers are putting into direct website sales and encouraging loyalty, following the lead of smaller discount carriers like JetBlue, Southwest, Virgin America, and others.

American Airlines has prominently displayed an FAQ area for consumers visiting AA.com explaining why Expedia and others no longer show American fares in search results. The airline, however, notes it will continue to negotiate with OTAs and GDS providers:

“American is a strong believer in pricing transparency and the choice afforded customers by our inclusion in online shopping comparisons”.

Sabre, one of the largest GDS platforms used by travel agents, which also powers Travelocity, struck back by announcing it would end their contract with American Airlines a month early (in August 2011) and immediately began reducing visibility for AA fares within searches.

In reaction, Expedia also pulled American Airlines from its results.

Meanwhile, Delta Airlines has also pulled fares from smaller OTA sites such as Airfare.com, CheapAir.com, Vegas.com, AirGorilla.com and Globester.com, according to the NY Times article. Hardly a major move, since those sites probably account for a smaller percentage of bookings.

In December, Delta made a bigger statement by pulling out of larger, but still second-tier sites like Bookit, OneTravel and CheapOAir, looking to provide a more “Apple-like” experience for consumers, and has been steadily upgrading booking features on its website.

A sample search result on Delta.com:

Indeed, Delta appears to be focusing on brand loyalty and streamlining the booking experience for both new and repeat users, their flight search results now feel more like an OTA booking engine, with (some) transparency of ancillary fees.

What Does This Mean For The State Of Travel Search?

Travel industry analyst, Douglas Quinby of Phocuswright, posted Airlines vs. the World, one of the most in-depth looks at what this all means to the travel industry in short and long term scenarios. Key points made by Quinby:

Expedia has preemptively called American’s hand on this. Giving unusual support to a direct competitor on the issue, Expedia first pushed the airline’s flights to the back of its flight display, and then on New Year’s day removed American’s fares altogether

…It is quite likely other carriers, emboldened by American’s actions, will enter the fray as their GDS agreements come up for renewal across 2011 and 2013..

The takeaway?

In the short term, airlines are posturing to see if they hold any negotiation power over the OTAs in an effort to reduce distribution costs, while speaking direct to consumers – potentially upselling ‘lowest fares’, and thereby boosting their profits in a number of ways.

Also at issue is how this will affect the airlines’ leverage in terms of forcing OTAs to use “direct connect” options, which would give airlines the ability to deliver a limited number of fares and availability to any/all intermediaries – including OTA’s, meta search engines and GDS systems, in effect, controlling airfare search results more tightly.

Immediately, though, it appears it’s the consumer losing if the number of search results (and fare options) start to diminish on OTA sites, even if they do offer best price guarantees. What’s more, it seems like this isn’t going to go away any time soon.

In the long term, Quinby points out a larger issue:

Airlines’ long-term strategy to advance distribution from fare- and schedule-led selling to merchandising. Today, airfare shopping treats the seat as a commodity. The results display is fare- and schedule-led. In other words, it is price and schedule that largely drive the results display when travelers (or travel agents) enter their search criteria.

Are Flyers Stranded With Poor Travel Search Results?

The bottom line is consumers are searching for value when comparison shopping on OTAs, and most travelers just want to see how to get to their destination as quickly and cheaply as possible, but it’s no longer a straightfoward comparison.

What many travel search engines fail to do is calculate and display the total cost of flying, which can include ancillary fees for baggage, premium seating and upgrades, in-flight services (or lack there-of), which is currently the airlines’ bread and butter as far as maximizing revenue per passenger.

That brings up some key issues surrounding consumer and traveler rights. What may seem like a very good deal on an OTA, quickly could turn into a traveler nightmare, as passengers who thought they were snagging a bargain begin to feel nickel and dimed without that transparency in search results.

Several organizations, such as the  Interactive Travel Services Association have taken a stance on transparency of add-on fees, while the Consumer Travel Alliance called upon American Airlines to “to launch a renewed effort to listen to its customers and partners about the services they actually want and need, instead of trying to force feed us a ‘direct connect’ to higher prices, less choice, and limited competition.

Meanwhile, on the search side of things, there’s other cries of foul play- FairSearch.org, the coalition formed  in “support of a healthy Internet future, where greater consumer choice and economic growth are driven by competition, transparency and innovation in online search” came under scrutiny by Internet legal expert Eric Goldman.

In a blog post from December 30th, Goldman pointed out Expedia’s (a named member of the coalition) apparent ‘hypocrisy’ in manipulating search results to reduce visibility for / completely exclude AA runs contrary to FairSearch’s mission.

What About Google Travel Search?

You might have heard that Google has plans to expand its travel offerings by acquiring ITA Software, a move that is being scrutinized by travel experts and government regulators.

Travel technology, historically speaking, moves at the speed of a glacier – as Quinby so rightly pointed out, it’s no small technical task to aggregate billions of flight options and fare data from multiple sources and present the results in a meaningful manner in a matter of seconds (or less) in a Google Instant world.

The legacy technology (read: dinosaur capabilities) of  the major GDS platforms (Sabre, Travelport, Amadeus et al) are now under intense pressure to revamp their products by way of innovation or acquisition, which is very much needed  in the travel search world. That brings us to the related issue in travel search technology: the ITA acquisition.

Some proponents believe that Google’s acquisition of ITA Software will lead to more innovation, because they appear to be in the best position to ramp up the technology quickly with the resources that could be put behind it.

Opponents, however, believe that Google already has too much power over initial travel searches, and the acquisition would only give Google more control over travel search and search advertising dollars, and would therefore hinder innovation because of their overwhelming market share.

Most importantly, anti-trust issues arise as Google could control which services license ITA technology – particularly important because Bing Travel currently uses ITA, but there’s no immediate impact on Bing’s travel search results at the moment.

In what would be a worst case scenario for some, Google could simply cut out other OTA/ intermediary sites and opt to display data prominently within the SERP and send traffic direct to airlines, which Google would then profit from via any direct connect deals with the airlines. The question of transparency, again, is a big one.

Because of Google’s stronghold in the search marketplace, if Google’s goal is to drive searchers directly to the best option, could it mean those airlines (like JetBlue, Southwest) who have rejected OTA presence, would be compelled to partner with ITA, in order to remain visible and competitive? (That may actually be a benefit to consumers, however.)

Among these issues, a Huffington Post commentary posted last Friday evening by former antitrust regulator Pamela Jones Harbour, points out other concerns that need to be considered by government regulators (to summarize Harbour’s points):

  1. Would Google manipulate the SERPs to provide favorable visibility ITA results?
  2. Could Google impact the pricing strategy for airlines by providing ‘personalized’ results based on demographic information they collect?
  3. How would the cost of travel search advertising be affected post acquisition and would airlines pass on increase to consumers? (Note: Harbour uses the example of Google/Yahoo Japan deal resulting in advertising costs rising by 5x, she phrases it as “what would prevent Google’s search advertising prices from increasing” – but that is quite misleading, given that the ad marketplace is market-driven, based on supply and demand – it regulates itself. However, the second point may be valid, but perhaps no more so than the rising cost of oil resulting in fuel surcharges; it’s a cost of doing business in the airline industry.)
  4. Would Google have too much control over the supply and demand side of travel search with the ability to show real-time pricing and availability, giving them power to extract higher advertising fees and what is shown to consumers?
  5. Would consumer choice (and competition) be affected, as well as limit opportunities for innovation by travel search competitors?

In A Holding Pattern

Given the standoff between the OTAs and airlines at the moment, it’s really a question of who will back down first in negotiations (assuming discussions are still happening as all sides suggest) – it seems one side or the other will need to see a significant decline in revenue before going back to the table with a new deal. It could be months (say, after first quarter earnings are determined) or years before anyone gives in, and much could change in the meantime.

Add to that the indefinite timeline for the ITA acquisition, and what that may mean to the travel search landscape, we’ll just continue to watch what happens in this ongoing drama, like helpless passengers stranded on the tarmac.

What should consumers do in the meantime to ensure they get a good deal on airfare?

If you’re booking a vacation package with Hotels, Cars, Activities, then OTA’s (as well as other niche travel sites) are still the way to go to get the best overall deal, although many airlines also offer vacation bundling, known as dynamic packaging in the industry. But if you only care about the cheapest airfare from point A to B, there’s really only a few options:

  1. Comparison shop the best you can using meta-search engines like Kayak.com or Fly.com, which allow you to compare the most fares, then go direct to the airline sites to buy.
  2. Research the best times to buy using Bing Travel’s price predictor or FareCompare.com to get alerts on upcoming fare sales from your airport(s) to favorite destinations.
  3. Learn which airlines have the most flights from your local airport(s), shop directly with them, but do review their fees/perks programs carefully. If airline has a fare sale within a week or so of your purchase, you may be able to call them and ask for the difference back if the same itinerary is lower.


Article source: http://searchengineland.com/off-the-radar-why-airlines-on-travel-search-engines-are-going-missing-60768

’48 Hour Deals for Travel Hotspots’ Launched by MyTravelAlert.com

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel Deals

Toronto, Canada, January 11, 2011 –(PR.com)– After initial plans to introduce a daily travel deal alert service for Canadians, the overwhelming response has led My Travel Alert to enhance their offerings for global travelers. Starting this Wednesday, major travel companies will begin releasing exclusive 48 hour travel deals on the freshly re-launched website.

“When we announced the new concept, we were inundated with registrations from global travelers and interest from resorts and travel companies, so we immediately expanded our model.” Says Dan Christian, Travel Industry Executive and My Travel Alert Partner. “We’re all very excited that starting this week, during the peak time of year for travel bookings, your dream destination might just appear on our new site.”

Several major travel companies have already decided to participate in the new service, including Air Canada Vacations, Trafalgar Tours, Contiki, Lonely Planet, Viator and World Nomads. Travel partners offer an exclusive travel deal that is immediately distributed to subscribers and featured on the website for 48 hours.

For more details and to register visit www.mytravelalert.com

My Travel Alert first launched in 2004 as an editorial-led email service for travel deals, and later expanded to feature deals submitted by members. My Travel Alert is based in Toronto, Ontario and is owned and operated by Web Business Incubator, Dano Digital Labs (www.danodigitallabs.com).

###

Article source: http://www.pr.com/press-release/289517

Travel Ticker Announces the Top Five Destinations to Find Luxury Travel Deals …

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel Deals


Click to view news release full screen


Site’s Travel Experts Recommend Consumers Indulge Now While the Deals are Hot

SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 11, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Travel Ticker®, a leading inspirational travel website, today announced the top locales where consumers can take advantage of luxurious deals at affordable prices.

With the economy inching towards a full recovery and prices stabilizing in many popular destinations, Travel Ticker’s team of seasoned travel experts understand that it will take a little bit more leg work to find once in a lifetime deals this year, and they’re out there doing it for you every day. To help consumers make the best travel decisions for their dollar, Travel Ticker has also put together a handpicked list of their favorite value destinations, complete with deals that won’t break the bank. Now, travelers can just exhale, enjoy, and lap up the life of luxury!

“For many destinations, now is the time to get luxury for less, but you have to know where to look,” said Barbara Messing, General Manager of Travel Ticker. “To help, we took the guesswork out of where and how travelers can find affordable luxury retreats. We also recommend taking advantage of deals to these destinations sooner rather than later because they might not last long.”

Below is a list of Travel Ticker’s top five picks for luxury travel now. For more hand-picked luxury deals visit www.travel-ticker.com/Theme/Luxury.

#1 Las Vegas

Las Vegas is still recovering from the new hotel openings in the midst of the economic downturn, so top luxe hotels on the strip are offering amazing deals. With the highly anticipated, 3,000-room Cosmopolitan Hotel officially opened on New Year’s Day, luxury hotel deals are here to stay – some at prices even lower than 2010. Travelers should be on the lookout for grand opening promotions and deals for Sin City in 2011 loaded with complimentary extras.

The Deal: 3-night Vegas trips w/air and 4.5-star hotel on The Strip — $415+: At these rates, there’s no excuse not to go to Vegas. United Vacations has 3-night Vegas trips that include a flight and a stay at the 4.5-star THEhotel at Mandalay Bay on The Strip from $415. Plus, you can earn extra Mileage Plus(R) bonus miles. It’s a win-win.

#2 Cancun and the Riviera Maya, Mexico

Viva la deal! Now is the best time to visit Mexico. Premium brands are opening resorts in the Riviera Maya area and these all-inclusive luxury resorts are a great option for travelers looking for a deal as everything is included – meals, drinks (with premium liquors), entertainment, activities and even ocean view upgrades.

The Deal: Riviera Maya: all-inclusive resort w/transfers credit, $99+: The all-inclusive, beachfront Ocean Maya Royale is celebrating its complete renovation with $99-per-person rates in April. This includes airport transfers and up to $100 in resort credits. Stay now-March from $107.

#3 Hawaii

Aloha! If lounging by the ocean with your umbrella drink seems like a perfect vacation for you, Travel Ticker can deliver! Resort destinations, especially those focused on families, see slower demand during the winter season, making now the time to take advantage of their offerings. In fact, several resorts on the Hawaiian Islands are showcasing winter sales to attract travelers to their beaches, making it easy for consumers to escape to the islands for some affordable RR.

The Deal: Exclusive Hawaii rates: 30% off 4-star Waikiki hotel — $145:  Boutique luxury at 30% off is a rarity for peak-season Waikiki. Stay at the 4-star Lotus at Diamond Head for only $145, now-June 30. Additional extras are included. You’ll only find this rate on Travel Ticker, so book now.

#4 Egypt

Never thought you’d see the pyramids in person? Well, what better time than now than to make that dream a reality! Luxury resorts and travel providers are offering deep discounts right now to attract travelers back who’ve been putting travel off to the region over the past couple years. And luxury package deals are a great way to cut even more costs this winter.

The Deal: Egypt w/Red Sea trip: air, luxe stays, Nile cruise — $1,999+   The real Luxor, real luxury, and more. Gate 1′s 15-day Egypt package includes a flight from NYC, stays at luxury resorts, a 7-night Nile cruise, intra-Egypt flights, and 31 meals from just $1,999*. The airfare alone prices out at over $1,300. It’s as if the hotels/meals/cruise are only $700. Valid select departures, January 27-August 4.

#5 Southern California

Winter is the perfect time to skip the crowds of high season and take advantage of the warm and sunny off-the-beaten path luxury locales in Southern California, like Catalina. Many travelers tend to overlook this wonderful island, resulting in some great deals during the off-season. From the activities to the relaxing surroundings, Catalina is a great destination that isn’t checked off most people’s lists yet and rounds out the top five list.

The Deal: Catalina Island: upscale hotel with $380 in extras — $102+:   The upscale Pavilion Hotel on Catalina Island is offering rates from $102 per person, per night, Sunday-Thursday, now-April 14. You’ll get over $380 per person in passes and extras, including the new Zip Line Eco Tour (a $92 value), round-trip ferry transportation (a $66 value), and unlimited access to six tours, movies, and the golf course.

About Travel-Ticker.com

Travel Ticker is an online inspirational travel website that is home to some of the best insider deals at many of the world’s favorite destinations. With an ear to the ground and an eye for the unique, Travel Ticker’s experts provide users with a platform to browse for researched travel bargains, the latest travel trends, and editorial insight. Established in 2006 as a travel newsletter and in 2008 as a standalone website, Travel Ticker boasts more than 11.5 million subscribers. Travel Ticker is an independent business unit of The Hotwire Group. For more information, visit us at http://www.travel-ticker.com/ and follow us on Twitter (@travel_ticker).

Travel Ticker, travel-ticker.com, and the Travel Ticker logo are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Hotwire, Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries. Other logos or product and company names mentioned herein may be the property of their respective owners. © 2011 Hotwire, Inc. All rights reserved. CST# 2053390-40

SOURCE Travel-Ticker.com

Back to top

RELATED LINKS
http://www.travel-ticker.com/

Article source: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/travel-ticker-announces-the-top-five-destinations-to-find-luxury-travel-deals-in-2011-113262449.html

Virgin Atlantic halts airport fees in snow dispute (AP)

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel News

LONDON – Virgin Atlantic Airways said Monday that it won’t pay fees to the owner of Heathrow airport because of what it sees as a slow reaction to heavy snow last month.

Airport owner BAA Ltd. says the airline has no right to withhold payments.

Heavy snow grounded aircraft at Europe’s busiest airport on Dec. 18, and Heathrow’s second runway was out of action until Dec. 21. Hundreds of flights were canceled and travelers were stranded for days.

BAA has commissioned an independent investigation of the problems, which is expected to be completed in March.

“We have written to BAA this weekend to advise them that we are withholding our fees from the airport operator until its inquiry into the snow enforced runway closures in December is completed,” a Virgin Atlantic statement said.

“Despite the airport operating conditions being way beyond our control, Virgin Atlantic is taking responsibility by paying out millions to customers that suffered disruption to their Christmas travel plans. We are keen that BAA also feels a strong sense of accountability to the consumer and that minds are focused on delivering a fully independent and robust inquiry by its deadline in March.”

BAA responded: “Heathrow’s conditions of use do not provide any basis for Virgin Atlantic or any other airline to withhold airport charges.”

Steve Ridgway, Virgin’s chief executive, told the Financial Times that the investigation should determine what was a reasonable time for clearing away the snow. Ridgway said the airline will be seeking compensation for the interruption of its operations beyond that time.

Article source: http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/aptrne/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap_travel/20110110/ap_tr_ge/eu_travel_brief_britain_virgin_atlantic

Salem Lizzie Borden museum shuts doors (AP)

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel News

SALEM, Mass. – A Lizzie Borden museum in Salem that sparked a lawsuit and questions over its location has closed after about 2 1/2 years in business.

Owner Leonard Pickel tells The Salem News that his 40 Whacks Museum faced steep rent and high utility costs at a time of year when tourist traffic slows. He says he was never able to attract key school groups.

His museum that opened in the summer of 2008 was originally called The True Story of Lizzie Borden. But he was sued by the Lizzie Borden Bed Breakfast in Fall River, where Borden was accused of using an ax to murder her father and stepmother. The Salem museum changed its name.

Others questioned why a museum about something that happened in Fall River was located in Salem, famous for its witch trials.

Article source: http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/aptrne/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap_travel/20110110/ap_tr_ge/us_travel_brief_lizzie_borden_museum

Top 6 Private Sale Sites for the Best Travel Deals

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel Deals

Private sale sites are all the rage, and in the past year we’ve seen a rapid growth in sites that focus on travel deals.

There is, of course, the debate over whether these sites are actually “members only” when invites are usually a Google search or membership request away. We concede that the exclusivity gimmick is usually just a matter of an Internet user’s drive to type a few words into a search bar and copy and paste an invite code. (The cat’s out of the bag, private sale sites!)

And then, there’s the other debate over whether these sites actually provide real deals. We say, yes. You don’t have to take a site’s word for it when they quote a discount percentage; we recommend performing a quick scan of the web to size up deals on other sites just to make sure it’s the lowest price out there. Some sites, like Tablet, even guarantee the lowest price — if you find a better deal, they’ll refund the difference.

With that, here are six private sale sites for travel (in alphabetical order) worth checking out. Let us know in the comments below which ones you use and recommend.


1. Jetsetter


Launched by luxury sample sale site Gilt Groupe in September 2009, Jetsetter is a luxury travel sale site offering trips to destinations all over the world at discounted prices. The site claims that its prices are generally “30-50% off the best available rates out there.” Among the growing number of travel private sale sites out there, Jetsetter offers some of the best variety.

While the site is invite-only, invitations are easy to come by with an easy Google search and membership requests can be made on the sign-in page. Furthermore, if you are a Gilt member, you are also a Jetsetter member (and vice versa). You can either access Jetsetter via the tab on Gilt.com or via Jetsetter.com, where all purchases ultimately take place.

Jetsetter sales last from five to seven days, or until sold out. To book a vacation, users can choose the destination, desired room or tour package and dates (these options usually accommodate multiple price points). A “Wait List” is also available, and users on the list are notified if additional rooms become available. For users on the fence about a particular deal, Jetsetter has a reservation feature that allows users to pay 10% of the trip’s cost to hold the reservation for 72 hours. If a user decides not to book a trip, the money is refunded as Jetsetter credit, good toward a future purchase. Once a trip is booked, though, cancellations, refunds, exchanges, or any date modifications are not permitted for any reason.

Like most private sale sites, Jetsetter offers referral credits: Users receive $25 in Jetsetter credit when an invitee makes his or her first purchase.


2. SniqueAway


Smarter Travel Media, a TripAdvisor Media Group company, launched SniqueAway in September 2010. The site showcases hotels in private sales that last seven days or until sold out. Invites are easily found on the web, but membership can also be requested on the sign-in page.

Choosing an “escape” entails selecting the trip, room type, check-in and check-out dates, and the number of rooms and travelers. Users have 15 minutes from the time they select the dates to book the trip before it is taken out of their shopping cart. Once purchased, cancellations are not available.

The selection on SniqueAway is usually limited to a handful of destinations across the world but the rates make checking in every once in a while worth it.


3. Tablet Hotels


Tablet Hotels is a site that focuses on curating a list of “hotels which have personality and obsess on the details.” How does it do that? It maintains a network of travel experts who anonymously review hotels — those reports are passed on to Tablet’s team who review them, pick out the best and showcase them on the site. Lastly, the site features a customer rating meter. If a hotel falls below an average of 15 points (out of 20) on customer ratings, the hotel is automatically removed from the site’s selection.

Tablet’s listings are discounted at up to 50% off, and users earn $10 with every booking and $25 when an invitee books for the first time.

Like the rest of them, Tablet claims that its sales are “only available to people who have either booked with us or have been invited in,” but as we have learned by now, the exclusivity behind most of these sites is usually a gimmick. I signed up and navigated to the “Private Sale” section without a hitch.


4. TripAlertz


TripAlertz offers 30 to 75% off premium hotels and distinguishes itself by offering prices that go down as the number of bookings go up. As more members book a deal, the price decreases, and everyone pays the same price once the deal ends.

The site offers more community features than others in the private sales industry. For example, once a deal is booked, users even have the option to meet and share advice on a private collaboration page with fellow travelers. In the end, 1% of each sale’s revenue is donated to the user’s choice of sustainable efforts. Furthermore, users can submit and vote on trip ideas. The ideas with the most votes ultimately become the deals offered, and the person who submits the idea with the highest booking volume for the month travels for free.

Also unlike other sites, TripAlertz users receive $5 in Trip Cash for each invited friend who signs up, no purchase necessary!


5. Vacationist


Presented by Luxury Link and Travel + Leisure, Vacationist features sales at up to 40% off on fine hotels around the world. Sales last between three to seven days, or until sold out.

Each sale showcases as resort or hotel, along with available dates and room types. Special to Vacationist is a “Hotel Report” from the editors of Travel + Leisure, which includes details like hotel features, awards, nearby airports and insider tips. The travel publication also weighs in on nearby attractions and seasonal adventures that can’t be missed. The buying process mirrors that of other sites, and cancellations are not permitted.

Members receive $25 in credit for each person they invite who joins and makes a purchase.


6. Voyage Privé


Voyage Privé, meaning “private travel” in French, offers high-end travel deals at prices of up to 75% off. The company offers 10 to 15 travel deals per week. Based in France, the site boasts more than 5 million members across five countries: France, Italy, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States. (Insider tip: Save yourself some noggin scratching — before logging in, make sure you choose the correct country. Your log-in information only works for the country chosen upon signing up.)

Each sale on Voyage Privé features a flip-through Flash brochure, complete with information on the hotel and destination, but most of those details can also be found on the sale page, saving the hassle of flipping through the feature. The sale page also includes a number of offers for various price points, usually ranging in the number of nights included.

If you need a little boost to get you started, you can be sure to collect a $25 travel credit when your invited friends buy their first deal.


BONUS: Travel Sections Within Larger Private Sale Sites


With the growing popularity of travel sites, existing private sale sites that traditionally focused on fashion, home or beauty have begun incorporating travel sections for discounted vacations and travel gear. Here are a few of our favorites:

  • Exclusively.In: Focusing on providing the best of India’s goods, Exclusively.In also offers Indian travel experiences at discounted prices.
  • Hautelook: Los Angeles-based online private sale site Hautelook recently acquired the travel site BonVoyou to form its Getaways section, which offers travel at up to 75% off.
  • ideeli: Private sample sale site ideeli introduced its travel section last September to accompany its offerings in fashion, home and beauty.
  • RueLaLa: After teaming up with luxury travel network Virtuoso in August, fashion-focused private sale site RueLaLa began offering cruise and resort vacation deals.

Your Picks


Which private sale travel sites do you use to book vacations (or just daydream about the many possibilities)? Let us know in the comments below.


More Travel Resources From Mashable:


- 6 Free iPad Apps for Planning Your Next Vacation
- 4 Social Web Apps for Making and Sharing Your Travel Plans
- Plan Your Next Vacation From a Single Dashboard
- 6 Essential Android Apps for Business Travel
- 5 Great Gadgets for Reinventing Your Road Trips

Article source: http://news.yahoo.com/s/mashable/20110109/tc_mashable/top_6_private_sale_sites_for_the_best_travel_deals

Emall.ca, Inc. Launches Website Offering Travel Deals on Las Vegas Hotels …

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel Deals

Las Vegas is one of the most popular destinations for Canadians but few, if any, online guides provide a uniquely Canadian view of the city

(PRWEB) January 11, 2011

LasVegas.ca is the latest in the vast Emall.ca network of high-traffic websites It’s main goal is to connect Canadian consumers and businesses through a niche-like, localized interactive experience. Offering exclusive travel deals for Las Vegas hotels, Vegas casinos, airfare to Vegas and car rentals, the Montreal-based company offers extremely competitive travel prices – often the lowest available anywhere.

“Las Vegas is one of the most popular destinations for Canadians but few, if any, online guides provide a uniquely Canadian view of the city,” explained Emall.ca president, Peter Maxymych. “LasVegas.ca is a site for Canadians by Canadians, placing visitors on a relevant, inside track to Las Vegas attractions and accommodations at the best prices available anywhere.”

The LasVegas.ca website has been developed by Internet Marketing and Website Design Company, TruInteractive.

“From a content perspective, LasVegas.ca is remarkable for delivering so much helpful information to its visitors,” said TruInteractive founder Truman Hedding. “Emall.ca’s commitment to providing a Canadian perspective simplifies travelling to and enjoying Las Vegas the simplest it can be for first time and returning visitors alike –all in a manner that’s distinctly Canadian.”

“We’ll be providing comprehensive content that speaks to the end user, while harnessing a uniquely Canadian perspective from every angle–including sporting events, in-demand shows, business amenities and natural attractions,” added Joy MacKay, TruInteractive Content Coordinator.

With insightful reviews from visitors to Las Vegas, the website will be adding content on a continuous basis in an effort to provide a comprehensive guide to the city itself as well as the outlying regions. With insightful reviews from visitors to Las Vegas, the website will be adding content on a continuous basis in an effort to provide a comprehensive guide to the city itself as well as the outlying regions. LasVegas.ca will offer deep discounts on Las Vegas tickets from shows to sporting events as well as reviews of the hottest Las Vegas restaurants.

LasVegas.ca and its sister site–NewYork.ca–are the first in a series of unique destination travel sites Emall.ca will be launching in the coming months. As part of a wider Canadian-centric travel initiative, Emall.ca with partner again with TruInteractive to create destination websites for travel destinations around the world.

About Emall.ca

Since 1998, Emall.ca, Inc., has been developing and managing dot-ca websites. In keeping with its slogan, “Where the world discovers Canada and Canada discovers the world,” the Montreal-based company has created a network of destination websites that connect Canadians to and the international marketplace and the international marketplace to Canadians.

About TruInteractive

TruInteractive offers dynamic Internet marketing services to clients in a comprehensive range of verticals. TruInteractive places an emphasis on transparent marketing techniques, while providing full-scale, website development, content creation and search engine optimization to clients in niche industries.

###


Share:


















Article source: http://www.prweb.com/releases/2011/las-vegas/prweb4958474.htm

3 passengers taken from JetBlue plane, no charges (AP)

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel News

BOSTON – Three people were removed from a JetBlue plane at Boston’s Logan International Airport after a flight attendant became “uncomfortable,” but the passengers were not arrested and the airline booked them on a later flight.

Massachusetts State Police said the behavior of the three men Monday morning “did not rise to the level of criminal charges.” Sgt. Matthew Murray said it was not clear what made the flight attendant uncomfortable.

JetBlue said three passengers were removed from Fight 1600 for “security reasons.” The plane was about to depart Boston for Reagan National Airport in Washington, D.C. The company said the passengers were later cleared to depart on a later JetBlue flight.

A spokeswoman said JetBlue would not release specifics about the incident.

Article source: http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/aptrne/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap_travel/20110110/ap_tr_ge/us_travel_brief_jet_blue_passengers_removed

American sues Sabre in battle over flight listings (AP)

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel News

DALLAS – American Airlines is suing Sabre to stop the company from downplaying American flights in displays that it provides to travel agents.

American says if Sabre is allowed to favor other airlines in data searches, it will cost American “countless sales.”

The lawsuit was filed Monday in state court in Fort Worth, Texas. It’s the latest blow in an escalating fight over how airline tickets are sold.

American wants to force travel agents to get information about flights and prices straight from the airline to reduce middleman costs. Sabre, a travel-data provider, retaliated last week by making it harder for travel agents to find information about American flights and raising fees that it charges American.

Article source: http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/aptrne/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap_travel/20110110/ap_tr_ge/us_travel_brief_airlines_online_booking

Vail Resorts reports early-season jumps in revenue (AP)

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Travel News

BROOMFIELD, Colo. – Vail Resorts says lift ticket revenue, skier visits and spending at its six resorts are up so far this ski season.

The Broomfield, Colo.-based company acquired Northstar-at-Tahoe in October and also owns Heavenly in the Lake Tahoe area, plus Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone in Colorado.

It says that through Thursday, skier visits were up about 10.1 percent from the comparable period last season, when looking at the numbers as if the company had owned Northstar last season too. It says lift ticket revenue was up 7.4 percent, ski school revenue was up 11.5 percent, and retail and rental revenue was up 17.5 percent.

Exact dollar figures weren’t released Monday.

Article source: http://us.rd.yahoo.com/dailynews/rss/aptrne/*http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap_travel/20110110/ap_tr_ge/us_travel_brief_vail_resorts_early_season

Next Page »