There’s such a vast amount of travel content available today and so many different online travel booking solutions available with just a few clicks of a mouse, it is sometimes difficult to know which is the best fit for your needs. While certain booking solutions may have the functionality and features you are looking for, they may not have the supplier inventory your customers want. In other cases, you may spot an online booking solution with just the content you need, but find that it is lacking the features and functionality you require. The solution to your problems may be found with an online booking engine that has the features and functionality to properly manage your business along with flexible supplier connection capability which will allow you to access various content sources for different travel products.
If your agency is selling multiple travel products, you may want your booking engine to access hotel content using one source, but look to use a totally different connection for your airline bookings or perhaps several other sources when booking a cruise. Finding the all the right travel related content sources in a single online booking solution that has the features and functionality you need can be overwhelming to most initially or a bit of a challenge at best.
Some of the more advanced travel booking solutions even allow you to choose specific content sources by Supplier, providing the ultimate in content source flexibility. You may want to use one GDS ID to make most of your airline bookings, except for a few markets where you prefer to check another GDS ID for the fares of an air consolidator. Your air booking engine needs to be able to quickly and easily support these different connections and know when to use each. Accessing the right content source, for specific content can play a role in determining your success.
As cruise line preferred supplier relationships become increasingly important to securing the best price and commission levels, biasing the cruise line availability display to show preferred suppliers first has become an important tool for many agency owners. Some cruise lines have been quick to recognize the benefits biasing the display may bring and may offer increased commissions and marketing support to agencies with an online booking solution with this capability.
Travel booking solutions also need the ability to quickly and easily define pre-set business rules so agency owners can adjust a product selling price or promote value add offers and special deals right in the availability display. Simply put, today’s online booking engine needs to keep up with all the different specials and promotions that Suppliers make available today. Selling price adjustments and value add offers need to be easy to define and provide the flexibility to set rules by a specific supplier, travel dates, booking dates, booking channel and more.
Finding a travel booking solutions that has the functionality and content you need is an important decision for your business. Finding the right technology partner to assist you in reaching your customers where they shop can be even more important.