Forbes.com has announced the official launch of its new, standalone luxury travel site, ForbesTraveler.com. The site, designed exclusively for the affluent, discerning traveler, is an all-inclusive online destination for inspiring, planning and booking the world’s most distinctive travel experiences. The new site joins ForbesAutos.com (launched May 2005) and Forbes.com as the company’s third online business.
Exclusive site features include:
—Discerning, specialized focus on luxury hotels and resorts only.
—Insider advice from top hotel concierge’s worldwide, including advice on food & drink, shopping, activities and outdoor ideas.
—A luxury travel expert panel featuring leading travel writers, travel agents and CEOs offering seasoned advice and opinion.
—Destination guides, including hotel, restaurant reviews and more, in collaboration with Mobil Travel Guide and Frommer’s Travel Guides.
—Travel tools including: Flight Tracker, Frequent Flyer Distance Calculator, Mileage Manager and more.
—Travel booking search engine powered by SideStep.
—The ForbesTraveler 400 will be announced soon and will highlight the 400 hottest hotels and destinations in the world.
ForbesTraveler.com includes the active participation of the world’s leading experts on luxury travel opportunities including adventure, sport, leisure and more. For example, in the sailing feature “Where the Pros Sail,” pro sailors representing Emirates Team NZ (New Zealand), Alinghi (Switzerland), Team Shosholoza (South Africa), BMW Oracle (USA, New Zealand, Australia), Challenge (Italy), AREVA Challenge (France), Luna Rossa Challenge (Italy), and Mascalzone Latino (Italy), suggest their favorite sailing vacations worldwide.
“Travel coverage on Forbes.com has always been among our most popular lifestyle content, and we’ve worked hard to earn the trust of our readers. We’re taking that success and converting it into a standalone business dedicated solely to luxury travel, and we think consumers and advertisers will be pleased with the results,” said Jim Spanfeller, President and CEO, Forbes.com.
Barry Golson is Editor of ForbesTraveler.com. A publishing veteran, he has served as executive editor at TV Guide, Playboy and World Press Review, as well as editor-in-chief at Yahoo! Internet Life. He is an award-winning travel writer (Lowell Thomas Travel Writing Award, 2004), with his pieces appearing in a wide array of publications including The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, Ski, Diversion, and more.
Todd Benedict is the site’s Advertising Director. He was most recently the Northeast Regional Sales Manager for Forbes.com.
The online luxury travel market is booming. Guideline Research’s recent trend report (Beyond Booking: Building Brand Equity Online in the Travel and Leisure Market), found that amongst $100,000K+ income households, 52% of travel spending is done online. Also, MRI research (Fall 2005) concluded that households that spent $3,000 or more on travel within the last 12 months have a higher propensity for heavy Web usage than any other media usage including newspapers, TV or magazine.
ForbesTraveler.com initial sponsors at launch include American Airlines, Coldwell Banker Previews International and SkyAuction.com.