The European online travel market is gaining prominence as the economic signs for this e-commerce segment continue to grow stronger.
Today, PhoCusWright, Inc., the leading independent Internet travel intelligence company, released The European Online Travel Marketplace, 2000 - 2002. This exclusive, in-depth report reveals that the European online travel market will soar from US$2.9 billion in 2000 to US$10.9 billion in 2002 - nearly a 300% two-year gain.
The findings, which cover most Western European nations with measurable e-commerce activity and potential, will help both American and European companies understand the growing opportunities in the European travel market as more consumers rely on the Internet to book their travel.
Factors contributing to this growth spurt were continuing strides in Internet and wireless usage; the breakdown of e-commerce barriers such as bill payment, security and privacy concerns; improved telecommunications; and the influx of new and improved online travel services. The emergence of the Internet and online commerce in Europe also coincides with the rise of the European Union (EU), creating one unified economy and, eventually, one common currency - the euro.
“Increasingly, Europeans are able to access the Internet using flat-rate payment plans instead of having to pay for Internet access by the minute, which had been a major constraint,” said Kate Rice, director of information services at PhoCusWright, Inc., and author of the report. “At the same time, several online players have begun to build significant market share - raising public awareness of travel e-commerce in the process. The greatest potential of the Internet is in its global capabilities and nowhere is that more true than in online travel.”
Airline Web sites and tour operators controlled 28% and 27%, respectively, of the European online travel market in 2000. Online travel agencies had a 26% market share; railways, 9%; hotels, 7%; and car rental companies, 3%.