Flight Centre Makes Strategic Investment in the Upside Travel Company

TravelPulse | April 09, 2019

Flight Centre Group continues to strengthen its rapidly growing global corporate travel business, announcing a strategic investment in The Upside Travel Company (“Upside”), the corporate travel company launched in 2017 by Priceline founder Jay Walker. FLT’s investment is for a 25 percent interest in Upside which will see it become the business’s largest individual shareholder providing access to Upside’s travel technology platform and software development resources. As part of the agreement, the parties also entered into a commercial deal that covers cooperation on various distribution initiatives that combine FLT’s deep understanding of the corporate travel space with Upside’s powerful technical assets.

Spotlight

Many travel management companies offer business travel technology platforms. Technology can be anything from online booking tools (OBTs) to mobile apps, and come with features such as traveler tracking,


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DESTINATION AND TOURISM

Frommer's Names the Best Hotel Booking Engines for Summer Travel in 2022

frommer | March 30, 2022

With travelers eager to hit the road again for summer vacation after the disruptions caused by the pandemic, Frommers—the trusted travel media company and guidebook publisher celebrating its 65th year in 2022—has released the latest edition of its Best and Worst Hotel Booking Sites. The ranking names the top online travel agencies and aggregators for finding lodgings on the road in 2022. The top 10 has been shaken up considerably since the previous ranking in 2020. Using a complex, weighted system involving 60 different room reservation scenarios, travel expert and analyst Reid Bramblett put booking engines through the wringer to determine which sites deliver the lowest rates, the most options, and the easiest user experience.For the first time, Google tops the list, but the search giant only narrowly edged out previous winner HotelsCombined, with both showing a keen ability to find the most affordable rooms. Other heavy hitters, including Tripadvisor and Kayak, only managed middling scores when put to the Frommer's test, ranking 5th and 7th respectively. After falling out of the top 10 five years ago, Hotels.com clawed its way to the 10th slot, displacing Hotwire from the list entirely. The complete top 10, along with detailed analysis, a rundown of each site's pros and cons, and money-saving warnings about sneaky tactics and outright rip-offs, can be found at Frommers.com/BestHotelSites. And coming soon: Frommer's latest ranking of the top sites for finding affordable airfare—fully updated for 2022. About Frommer's One of the most venerable brands in travel, Frommer's has been in continuous publication since the 1957 debut of Arthur Frommer's Europe on 5 Dollars a Day, which changed the way the world traveled. The Frommer's collection of travel products has expanded to include nearly 100 award-winning guidebooks, a popular podcast, and Frommers.com, winner of the 2021 silver medal for best travel journalism website in the prestigious Lowell Thomas Awards from the Society of American Travel Writers.

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BUSINESS TRAVEL

Mystifly Joins UATP Network

UATP | April 22, 2022

UATP and Mystifly announced a strategic partnership in which UATP will be integrated into MystiPay, an airline payment solution from Mystifly. The partnership focuses on reducing the cost of acceptance for travel payments. "We recognize that the airline distribution and payments landscape is complex, Through MystiPay, and with UATP as the scheme, we want to offer a profitable and secure payment solution that unlocks new revenue streams and better rebates, while lowering the cost of acceptance. We take great pride in partnering with UATP as both businesses share a common vision to provide a better payment opportunity for all. We look forward to maximizing the value of this partnership." -Rajeev Kumar, CEO and MD, Mystifly Today, Mystifly is one of the largest global B2B airfare aggregators backed by its strong travel technology vision. Mystifly offers search and retailing, order management, revenue and channel management, ancillary sales, multi-currency payment wallet , "Mystify continues to grow as a travel tech leader. Becoming an Issuer will enhance supplier relations and increase spending power. Mystifly will help save the industry money by utilizing UATP in its supplier relationships." -UATP President and CEO Ralph Kaiser For more information, visit UATP.com or Mystifly.com. ABOUT UATP UATP is a global payment solution owned and operated by the world's airlines and accepted by thousands of merchants for air, rail and travel agency payments. UATP connects airlines to Alternative Forms of Payment which can expand reach and generate incremental sales globally. UATP offers easy-to-use data tools, DataStream℠ and DataMine℠, which provide comprehensive account details to Issuers and Corporate Subscribers for accurate travel management. Accepted as a form of payment for corporate business travel worldwide by airlines, travel agencies and Amtrak®; UATP accounts are issued by: Aeromexico; Air Canada (TSE: AC); Air China; Air New Zealand (ANZFF.PK); Air Niugini; Air Serbia; American Airlines (NASDAQ: AAL); APG Airlines; Austrian Airlines; BCD Travel; China Eastern Airlines (NYSE: CEA); Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL); EL AL Israel Airlines; Etihad Airways; Fareportal; Frontier Airlines; GOL Linhas aereas inteligentes S.A. (NYSE: GOL and Bovespa: GOLL4); Hahn Air; Hight Point Travel; Japan Airlines (9201:JP); JetBlue Airways; Qantas Airways (QUBSF.PK); Shandong Airlines; Sichuan Airlines; Southwest Airlines; Sun Country Airlines; TUIfly GmbH; Turkish Airlines (ISE:THYAO); United Airlines (NYSE: UAL) and WestJet. AirPlus International issues the UATP-based Company Account for Lufthansa German Airlines. About Mystifly: Mystifly is a travel tech leader in airline retailing envisioned to bring a positive difference in the experience of the travelers and how air travel is sold. Mystifly is the new operating system for existing or new businesses to start or grow their travel business globally. Certified by IATA as a NDC Level 4 Aggregator, Mystifly offers NDC-aligned tech stacks for businesses of every size. Founded in 2009, Mystifly unifies distribution, fulfilment and payments on a single platform that allows search, ticket, ancillary sales, post-booking services and payment for over 700 airlines including 180 LCCs, NDC and Non-NDC Airlines. Mystifly's suite of products empowers over 3000 clients globally.

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COMMERCIAL TRAVEL

Fareportal Shares Holiday Season Good Works to Encourage Giving

Fareportal | December 24, 2021

2021 is coming to a close, and the holidays are upon us. In this traditional season of giving, Fareportal, the travel technology company behind leading online travel agencies CheapOair and OneTravel, is changing the narrative on what has been a very challenging year by sharing with others. Continuing what has been a tradition of giving that spans more than a decade, and as an expression of goodwill, the company has donated to The Ali Forney Center, which supports LGBTQIA+ individuals and organizations; New York Cares, which addresses needs in the New York City area through year-round volunteer opportunities; Covenant House, which provides shelter, food, immediate crisis care, and other services to homeless and runaway youth; Tourism Cares, dedicated to support of the travel & tourism industry; The Travis Roy Foundation, dedicated to supporting those suffering from spinal cord injuries; Berkshire South, supporting the health and well-being of residents of the Southern Berkshires; Digital Undivided, supporting the creation of economic opportunity for Black and Latinx women entrepreneurs; Children's Hope India, serving the needs of the children of India, and Amigos de los Animales Puerto Rico, which rescues, rehabilitates, and rehomes abused and abandoned animals. “Philanthropy has always been a foundational concept for Fareportal. Since the company’s inception, our Founder & Executive Chairman, Sam S. Jain, ensured that we prioritize giving back to the local and global community. This year presented unprecedented challenges to so many individuals that we felt it only right to step up our efforts to shine a light of hope as we enter the New Year,” -Werner Kunz-Cho, CEO of Fareportal. The company hopes that sharing this information will remind others there is still time to brighten someone’s holiday by making a charitable donation. About CheapOair CheapOair is an online travel agency that specializes in providing cheap flights and great last-minute flight deals for travelers worldwide. Consumers can book online, on mobile apps for iOS and Android, by phone, or live chat. Part of Fareportal’s family of travel brands, CheapOair bridges the gap between an online travel agency and a traditional agency with travel agents available worldwide to help find great deals on flights to global destinations on over 600 airlines, a million lodgings, and 100s of car rental companies. Follow CheapOair on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for travel inspiration and helpful travel tips.  About Fareportal   Fareportal is a travel technology company powering a next generation travel concierge service. Utilizing its innovative technology and company-owned and operated global contact centers, Fareportal has built strong industry partnerships providing customers access to over 600 airlines, a million hotels, and hundreds of car rental companies around the globe. With a portfolio of consumer travel brands including CheapOair and One Travel, Fareportal enables consumers to book online, on mobile apps for iOS and Android, by phone, or live chat. Fareportal provides its airline partners with access to a broad customer base that books high-yielding international and domestic flight, hotel, and other travel and add-on ancillaries.

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DESTINATION AND TOURISM

Meliá Hotels International Accelerates Digital Transformation with Dynatrace During Global Travel Resurgence

Dynatrace | April 29, 2022

Software intelligence company Dynatrace (NYSE: DT) announced Meliá, the international luxury hotel chain, is using the Dynatrace® platform to deliver frictionless guest experiences as the demand for travel hits record levels. In anticipation of this industry shift, and to meet guests on the mobile and online platforms where they prefer to interact, Meliá accelerated its digital transformation by migrating its critical applications, including those supporting its online reservation and contact center services, to a cloud-native environment running on Kubernetes in AWS. This provided the agility Meliá needed to release better digital functionality faster, so its guests could access more of its hotel services via mobile and web platforms. The Dynatrace® platform’s broad and deep observability and advanced AIOps capabilities have allowed Meliá to ensure its digital services deliver the same quality experience as in-person interactions with hotel staff. “The cloud and Dynatrace have transformed the way our business operates and how our teams work in this modern era, Before Dynatrace, we used to spend hours manually searching through metrics, logs, and traces to piece together insights about user experience. Now, this takes minutes or seconds. If guests experience a problem using any of our digital services, our contact center teams know precisely what’s causing the issue and are empowered to provide faster, more personalized resolutions, and ultimately deliver a greater standard of care. This has enabled our teams to focus more time on driving business and customer value, and to ensure our ongoing success during what has been a challenging time in our industry.” -Christian Palomino, Vice President of Global IT, Meliá Hotels International. With Dynatrace, Meliá’s teams are rededicating their focus to optimizing digital services and finding new ways to accommodate the rapidly evolving preferences of the modern traveler. This has helped the hotel chain reduce the reliance on in-person interactions, which has led to an increase in the volume of transactions handled through its digital channels from around 40% at the end of 2019, to more than 80% during the pandemic, which was a major asset through those difficult times. We developed our Stay Safe with Meliá Program to achieve our goal of maintaining frictionless relationships between staff and guests, while also reducing in-person contact, continued Palomino. Dynatrace has been critical to this effort, enabling our teams to accelerate the delivery of new digital services that allow our guests to do things like check-in or book a table in our restaurants via our mobile app, reducing the need for person-to-person contact across our hotels. Dynatrace delivers the precise, AI-powered insights we need to understand exactly how our customers interact with our applications, and how their experiences impact our business. This has helped our teams discover where our guests are struggling, and what we need to do to improve our digital services, so they have a great experience and can fully relax during their stay with us. Visit our Customer Stories page for more details on how Meliá is accelerating digital innovation and delivering frictionless guest experiences across its hotels with Dynatrace. About Dynatrace Dynatrace (NYSE: DT) exists to make the world’s software work perfectly. Our unified software intelligence platform combines broad and deep observability and continuous runtime application security with the most advanced AIOps to provide answers and intelligent automation from data at an enormous scale. This enables innovators to modernize and automate cloud operations, deliver software faster and more securely, and ensure flawless digital experiences. That’s why the world’s largest organizations trust the Dynatrace® platform to accelerate digital transformation. Curious to see how you can simplify your cloud and maximize the impact of your digital teams? Let us show you. Sign up for a free 15-day Dynatrace trial.

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