Selfbook | December 09, 2022
Selfbook, a unique, comprehensive hotel payment software platform bringing direct bookings and modern payment technology to hotels worldwide, announced a strategic investment from Amex Ventures. The investment follows a $40 million Series A and A+ round led by Tiger GlobalThis announcement highlights Selfbook’s continuous growth within the hospitality space. As it continues to broaden its reach in the travel industry, Selfbook looks forward to working with American Express following this investment.
Selfbook enables hotels to offer guests a seamless, one-step checkout experience directly on their websites while elevating the user experience and streamlining the payment process for hotels, which can increase conversion and boost revenue. Selfbook also groups multiple services, such as restaurant reservations, spa appointments and activities, into a single payment flow to easily drive upsells.
“The American Express brand is synonymous with global travel and payment security, and we are thrilled to have Amex Ventures be part of our investor base, As hotels around the world continue to use Selfbook to offer a guest-first booking experience and secure payments, the investment from American Express will help us deepen our global presence and provide even more effective payment tools for our partners.”
-Khalid Meniri, Co-Founder and CEO of Selfbook
We are constantly on the lookout for innovative technologies that enhance and elevate the travel and payments experience,” said Margaret Lim, Managing Director of Amex Ventures. “We believe Selfbook is driving hotel bookings and payments into the future with their elegant checkout experience, intuitive user interface, and robust support for modern payment methods preferred by guests through a unified platform that seamlessly integrates with existing hospitality software.
Uniquely positioned at the intersection of fintech and hospitality, Selfbook revolutionizes hotel bookings and payments from the inside out. Working in tandem with hotels’ existing technology systems, Selfbook enhances what matters most to hotels, including direct conversion, revenue, cash flow control, and security. Built by a team of hospitality veterans, Selfbook’s products provide a refreshingly effortless user experience for guests and hoteliers alike. Selfbook is committed to empowering hotels worldwide with modern e-commerce solutions tailor-made for our industry.
Shoopit | December 09, 2022
Innovative flight search engine and browser extension, shoopit, has released its 2022 Consumer Travel Survey. The project was undertaken to uncover the habits of UK travellers in the face of difficult economic challenges, showing that while those most affected by the ongoing cost-of-living crisis may delay their flight bookings, they still say that they’re likely to travel at least once in the next 12 months.
The survey was conducted among 2003 UK consumers who have bought a plane ticket in the last five years to determine how their travel habits have changed and where their priorities lie. The interviews were conducted by Sapio Research on behalf of shoopit in November 2022.
The key results of the survey are detailed below:
Pre-COVID-19 pandemic (pre-2019) travelling habits: In the past five years, respondents who had travelled by plane for either ‘holiday’ or ‘business’ took two trips per year. Respondents spent an average of nine nights abroad on a ‘holiday trip’, and two nights abroad on a ‘business trip’.
Post-COVID-19 pandemic travelling habits: Since the pandemic, respondents are 57% less likely to take as frequent trips abroad as they were prior to Covid-19. The survey also shows that respondents are more likely to travel shorter distances and have 51% less budget for travel expenses.
Future travelling: Over the next 12 months respondents intend to make two ‘holiday trips’ and one ‘business trip’, with individuals expecting to spend on average nine nights abroad for a ‘holiday trip’ and four nights abroad for a ‘business trip’. However, on average those who are ‘extremely affected’ by the cost of living crisis only intend to travel once in 2023.
Impact of the cost-of-living crisis on travelling: On average, respondents would consider themselves less likely to book a flight when the price increases by 17%, while for those ‘very affected’ by the cost-of-living crisis, this threshold decreases to 15%. Furthermore, 55% are less likely to travel abroad in the next 12 months and 32% have delayed booking a trip due to the cost-of-living crisis. This increases to 42% for those ‘extremely affected’ by the cost-of-living crisis.
Impact on the environment: Travellers are evermore becoming conscious of their carbon footprint with 40% of respondents most likely to book direct flights. In addition, 78% of people will not be taking business trips as opposed to only 32% prior to covid, highlighting the shift businesses have taken towards non-essential travel.
To check out the survey in more detail and to see how people’s flight booking habits have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and the cost of living crisis, download the full report here.
Shoopit is a search engine and browser extension that acts as an online shopping optimiser for flight bookings. What makes it unique is that it doesn’t just collect prices like an aggregator. Instead, it scours local versions of global websites to get the best possible prices for its users (the price you’re shown for the same seat on the same flight can vary wildly, depending on where you happen to live!) Born out of a commitment to make the internet transparent, democratic and borderless, Shoopit searches local versions of world’s most popular flight-booking websites, to find the best prices offered, allowing shoopit users to make better, informed purchases online, while at the same time making savings - regardless of where they live or what their IP address is. It launches in the UK, with backing from global online access provider, Hola.
TRAVEL TECHNOLOGY,INDUSTRY OUTLOOK
IBS Software | December 08, 2022
New data from travel technology company IBS Software reveals that despite more than two thirds (68%) of passengers being inconvenienced by disrupted journeys since COVID travel restrictions were lifted and 66% expecting more of the same during upcoming trips, most (83%) still plan on flying for a break in the next six months.
The research, which polled 2000 recent travellers in the UK and US*, warns that holiday providers have one more chance to get it right; if holidaymakers experience disruptions again during their upcoming trips, over half (55%) will avoid booking with the airline in the future. When asked who they blame for their poor experiences, 50% said it was the fault of the airlines when flights were delayed, with just 13% blaming the airport. However, when it comes to lost luggage the jury is out - 42% say it's the airport's responsibility and 40% are seething at the airline.
Delayed flights or missed connections was the most common holiday hurdle, affecting over a third of all passengers (35%), followed closely by waiting in longer than normal queues (31%) and cancelled flights (15%). Lost luggage, which dominated the news headlines in the Summer, is confirmed by the research as a major annoyance, blighting nearly 1 in 7 passengers' holidays over the last 18 months.
Despite a clear desire to travel, passengers won't accept more disruption without protest. If passengers find out their journey is going to be disrupted, 53% will complain to the airline and 38% will use social media to broadcast their annoyance. And if an airline doesn't have a reputation for punctuality they're likely to lose out with 93% of travellers saying this is an important factor when deciding which airline to buy from.
However, there is still an opportunity for airlines to win back the loyalty of their passengers. When terminal turmoil occurs, passengers can be placated by automatic refunds when eligible; proactive customer support to suggest alternative routes; and automatic alerts on their phone when something goes wrong. As one passenger who took the survey commented: "Just actually organise yourselves properly, there's no excuse for all the disruption".
Philip Hinton, SVP, IBS Software, comments: "The pent-up desire to travel was always going to put airlines and airports under extreme pressure - and so it proved, with widespread disruption plaguing many long-anticipated journeys. Airlines know this is a major issue and we are seeing them prioritising on-time performance and customer satisfaction because the widespread issues have directly impacted business performance."
About IBS Software
IBS Software is a leading SaaS solutions provider to the travel industry globally, managing mission-critical operations for customers in the aviation, tour & cruise and hospitality industries. IBS Software's solutions for the aviation industry cover fleet & crew operations, aircraft maintenance, passenger services, loyalty programs, staff travel and air-cargo management. IBS Software also runs a real time B2B and B2C distribution platform providing hotel room inventory, rates and availability to a global network of hospitality companies and channels. For the tour and cruise industry, IBS provides a comprehensive, customer-centric, digital platform that covers onshore, online and on-board solutions. IBS Software is a Blackstone portfolio company and operates from 15 offices across the world. Further information can be found at https://www.ibsplc.com/