Issue 36: 29th June 2012

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    TripAdvisor, Facebook continue love-in

    TripAdvisor and Facebook have taken the next step in their relationship and are now visiting restaurants together. TripAdvisor has introduced in beta a new Facebook app, Local Picks, which highlights restaurant recommendations from locals and friends from the 850,000 restaurants it lists, in doing so attempting to further personalise its offering. Adam Medros, VP of [...]
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    General search dominates hotels

    More travellers use general search engines to look for hotels than airline tickets, according to a PhoCusWright Global Edition report. PhoCusWright's Reading Between the Links: Why Travellers Use General Search Engines highlights the more fragmented and complex nature of the hotel sector in comparison to the market for flights and draws attention to the growing [...]
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    Paying for loyalty

    Hotel operators have increasingly been seeking to differentiate themselves to owners through their loyalty schemes, sold as a key driver in attracting guests. According to a study by US-based consultants at PKF, the cost of being part of a guest loyalty to the owner has risen, alongside royalty payments, suggesting that, for franchisors at least, [...]
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    VCs continue to back sector

    Hipmunk has confirmed USD15m of funding from Institutional Venture Partners, illustrating the ongoing interest in the sector from venture capitalists. The company, which specialises in flight and hotel search, said that it would use the money to add employees, including engineers and marketers, as well as launching a new product “that’s more complete than any [...]
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    Orbitz ramps up its technology but hits the curb

    Last week saw Orbitz launch its revamped mobile booking app, which allows the user to go through the whole booking process without using a mobile website. This should help Orbitz further grow the already impressive 9% of hotel bookings that came through mobile channels in the first quarter. However the company also hit a speed [...]