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Yes, That’s Exactly What We Need – Another Player In The Travel Space

Don’t you think the situation in the travel space is going bezurk getting out of hand? Alootechie reports that Kayak, the most popular travel meta-search  has launched an India site – Kayak.in. The site currently only features flights, and the Fare Buzz section is currently US focused.

This makes Kayak the twentieth fifth fourth travel meta-search player in India, after Zoomtra (Smile Interactive), Ixigo (funding from BAF Spectrum), Mobissimo and ezeego1 (Cox & Kings) (Update: as pointed out in the comments, ezeego1 is NOT a meta search, despite their claims). There are also a large number of other travel related sites operating in India, focusing on flight ticketing, bus ticketing, hotel booking, selling last minute ticket inventory, holiday planning…

These are tough times- with the fuel price rise, airfares have increased, and hence the propensity to travel would have declined. Most of Online Travel Agents (OTAs), despite high revenues, primarily have what are called “pass through revenues”, and commissions are in the low single digits. Which is why consolidation (like Expedia acquiring TravelGuru) is imminent.

The meta search engines actually have an advantage – can crawl airline sites for special fares which OTAs are contractually not able to offer (correct me if I’m wrong, please).

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