A New Take on Online Bookings?

Technology, Travel Industry

Owegoo is a new take on online bookings according to recent articles in the press. Instead of knowing where you want to go you tell the site what you want to do and get destinations suitable for your interests. It sounds like a great idea at first but when thinking about it, this is what your travel agent does for you already.

We tried the functionality by typing in “sailing” as an interest and was suggested to go to Bangkok. Yes, the Mekong River flows through the city but it is not famous for its sailing. Fiji is surrounded by water and was another suggestion for sailing so we decided to go ahead with Fiji. The system did not find any flights to Labasa Airport (LBS). Any seasoned travel agent knows that this trip has to be done via Nadi or Suva. I guess the application needs more work. We also tried the flight search and got prices but never managed to proceed to Ebookers booking engine. This might have been a temporary glitch. The design is top-notch, up to date and very easy to navigate.

Travel agents, please take this as a sign of what might come in the future. Maybe even sooner than you think. You do work hard, spend lots of time on the road to educate yourself on destinations, attractions and what to select for your customers. This knowledge is your bread and butter and should be used to tie your customers even closer to you, for mutually beneficial symbiosis. Start thinking of yourselves as consultants, instead of bookers. Be proud of your knowledge and use it to make your customers trips the greatest ever. This way, you will have loyal customers who never will desert you in favor of a machine.

A good read, for both travel agents and travel customers, is Larry Olmsteds article “Why You Need A Travel Agent” on Forbes.com. Happy travel planning, no matter if you are a professional or a DIY.

Have questions or want to add something? Please contact me via email, in the comments below, on TwitterFacebook or Google+.

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