Online travel agency Goibibo has launched live flight tracking for over 1,800 international and national daily flight schedules. The company will provide information like the flight schedule, aircraft type, gate number, baggage carousel, delays with arrivals and departures, changes in terminal or gate and let friends or family track a user’s journey including arrival and schedule change.
Goibibo says that although the journey tracking is meant for the user’s contacts, soon users will be able to use their goContacts to share with groups of contacts as well. The company claims that its flights business turned profitable and grew by 115% last year. It says that 65% of its flight bookings and 82% of its hotel bookings (up from 71% this January) are from mobile.
Flight tracking data is available internationally on multiple sites (here and here, for example). Currently, MakeMyTrip, Yatra, Google Flights and other standalone airline carriers offer live flight tracking on their sites.
Note that in February, Ibibo Group raised $250 million from South African media conglomerate Naspers and Chinese internet company Tencent. Ibibo has investments or stakes in Goibibo, redBus, travelboutiqueonline and PayU Global and was founded by Ashish Kashyap in 2007.
OTAs are finding unique ways to attract users to their portals. Earlier this month, Cleartrip launched a ‘price lock’ feature which let its users lock a flight booking price to basically “protect” the user from flight price fluctuations and cancellation and amendment fees. In April this year, it launched multi-city flight booking on its mobile apps. In July, Oyo Rooms tied up with Travelport to list 6,000 Oyo properties on the latter. In the same month, Via.com tied up with Ola to let its users book Ola rides for local and outstation travel. In April, Snapdeal started offering flight and bus booking on its platform.
Other Goibibo developments:
– In August, Goibibo launched an GoCars, an intercity car sharing service which would be app only and allow users to pay for number of seats instead of the car and offer verified profiles on the platform.
– In March, Goibibo launched Go-Time Guarantee, a service which offered a guaranteed refund processing within 2 hours of travel cancellation on the portal. If the refund didn’t happen in 2 hours, it would credit Rs 100 for every hour of delay to the user’s GoCash wallet.
– In September last year, Goibibo launched a new section on its website and mobile app called GoStays which would aggregate unbranded budget accommodations across India.