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BizReport : Research archives : March 23, 2007

Travel sites are upgrading to include reviews

With more consumers turning to the Internet to research travel destinations and make travel bookings, travel websites are seeing record-breaking numbers. To keep users on-site longer, many travel sites are offering value-added content such as reviews.

by Kristina Knight

Priceline announced a deal with Zagat earlier this week, that provides Zagat surveys and destination information for travelers researching destinations. Travel hubs like and are also including destination guides, in addition to their traditionally low prices on airfare, hotels and cheap vacation packages.

Why are travel hubs suddenly interested in these value-added opportunities? Because more users are turning to online travel hubs instead of real-world travel agents. According to one report, about 36% of European tour operators, 62% of hotels and 40% of package deal operators are booking through online travel hubs. In another report, Burst Media surveyed more than 2,000 online travelers who said that they would use the Internet to plan their trip (79%) or that the Internet was their primary travel resource (47%).

Offering users more for their money in the form of travel guides or vacation packages is one way to keep them coming back vacation after vacation.

Tags: online content, online travel

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  • About five years ago, I did a research project for a competitor and found that web users wanted interactivity and reviews on the travel pages. Had the company paid me the end-of-contract payment, I would have released that information to them.

  • People should be really cereful with "reviews" coming from online travel sites. For instance, is there any chance that EXPEDIA would publish my horrible experience with them? (click on my name to read my case). Even wikipedia mention "....and failure to post negative reviews online at" (read the entry for EXPEDIA in wikipedia).

    Good luck



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