The travel industry is no exception and a host of sites have launched in the past several years all trying to capture the attention of the traveler and take a piece of the online travel market.
Despite the dominance of the big players, such asTripadvisor , Holidayiq and Mustseeindiaseveral new online travel sites have been able to attract large audiences and significant outside investments in relatively quick time periods.
Here is a quick look at the top 5 trends that the newest online travel sites are incorporating and a review of what the most successful sites are doing to engage users.
1. Recommendation planning for travel
Most of the new sites launched in the past several years fall into this category and are based on the premise of trying to recommend places for you to go based on advice from your network of Facebook friends. Some of the better know examples are the more established Holidayiq and newly launchedTravel Comfort http://www.travelcomfort.in/
2. Tourism based around products
These sites bring travelers and suppliers together on the same platform and engage travelers (consumers) with a product.
This space is quite varied with one end of the spectrum being dominated by p2p sites like Namo Triphttp://namotrip.com/
Hello Travel seems to have hit things right on the mark with by combining travelers and suppliers (people can book tour packages) with local tour operator without extra fee.
The latest entrants into this segment are TouristLink which looks to bring users together who stay in the same hostel and Travel Comfort http://www.travelcomfort.in/
3. Travel friend finders
TouristLink seems to have found the right path for bringing users together for dating or friendship but unlike traditional dating sites has a focus on bringing users together around places.
Adding a new twist to this formula is Travel Comfort which promises people not places on your next trip based on the idea of connecting you to friends of friends by essentially digging deeper into your social profile.
4. experiences and Local guides
A number of sites have launched connecting travelers to individual travel guides in local cities.TouristLink is a simple and well designed platform and Travel Man India promises to let you book amazing experiences by connecting with locals.
5. Tools to share your trip planning
Sites letting travelers share trip experiences such as Trip Advisor and Holidayiq are well established but new comers such as MustSeeIndia and Travel Comfort are adding a new twist by giving users recommendations either from friends or based on interests derived from social profiles of members.