The battle for market share in the online travel industry is really taking off
This week has seen the launch of a new UK travel site “Opodo”,backed by nine of the traditional European airlines and plans to sell cheap flights, hotel accommodation and car hire.
It recently set up a German version and has plans to launch in France, Italy and Spain before the end of the year.
“We will be the biggest travel site in the world,” says chief executive Giovanni Bisignani, a former boss of Alitalia.
350,000 tickets a day are special fares (provided by 45 airlines that have marketing agreements with Opodo)
Opodo sources tickets from 480 airlines in total
Opodo site contains 40,000 pages of information, including maps and airport guides
Opodo has caused some reaction with its claim that “it will undercut other online travel companies from the outset”.
Online travel shop Expedia is concerned that the nine airlines might sell their flights more cheaply on Opodo than they do on other sites - and has complained to the European Union.
“We welcome the competition, as long as it is a level playing field,” says James Vaile, managing director of Expedia in the UK.