Transport Airlines

Low-Cost Airlines Aren’t Getting Much Traction Upselling Hotels Through Their Sites

@rafat

Apr 21, 2014 7:30 am

Skift Take

The big question for these low cost airlines: Can they ever become effective at diversification beyond their own main product. How many people actually end up buying these services beyond air?

— Rafat Ali

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Report: Social Media Customer Service in the Travel Industry

The Southwest.com hotels booking section gets very low traffic.


Low-cost airlines are continuing their inevitable march across the world, and as part of that they have led a movement of ancillary fee-based services that are now driving record profits for these companies.

Among them are baggage fees, on-board food, seat assignments, in-flight Wi-Fi and many others. And while many of them are being now being sold and paid online as part of the booking process, one of the upsold services the low-cost carriers have not been able to crack is selling anything beyond their own main product.

Using SimilarWeb.com traffic data, we’ve done an analysis of the traffic to these websites (note: this is desktop traffic only and doesn’t include mobile or tablet visits) and have looked at ten leading low cost airlines to identify how successful they’ve been in driving their users to hotel section.

And the picture is still a minuscule one.  

Admittedly, this isn’t a main focus of these airlines. While main flight-related ancillaries are still showing robust growth year over year and these airlines dream up new ones. Most of these airlines are using third-party booking sites or online travel agencies to fulfill these services. For instance, easyJet, the top of the list, used Booking.com as the fulfillment provider for these hotels bookings.

Are users even looking to book hotels and other services such as car transport from brand.com websites? More importantly, are airlines missing out on new ways to target and convert these users?

Hotel Section Monthly Visits Total Monthly Visits Percentage of Traffic
EasyJet 6.8M 227M 3%
Ryanair 950K 369M 0.26%
Lionair 270K 64M 0.42%
Southwest 930K 286M 0.33%
Jetblue 560K 130M 0.43%
Gol None 109M 0%
Air Asia 8M* 125M 6.4%
Air Tran None 42M 0%
WestJet 95K 46M 0.21%
Jetstar 670K 104M 0.64%

Data from Similarweb * = 6 month time period because of a site redesign

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