There's been a lot going on with TravelPerk lately. With this new service, the travel management startup is clearly taking steps to disrupt the corporate travel industry.
One of the most frustrating things about business travel is the lack of flexibility. Trying to change flight or hotel bookings can be a costly nightmare for companies managing their own travel.
So far, the industry hasn’t come up with a better system to handle cancellations. But there might be hope: Corporate travel booker TravelPerk announced Thursday a service called FlexiPerk, designed to make changing travel plans a lot easier.
When we last talked to TravelPerk CEO Avi Meir, the startup had just raised an extra $60 million in Series C funding. After years of building up its inventory and improving user experience, Meir said the company was now focused on innovation.
We take a look at what this new product has to offer, and what it could mean for the industry. Plus we explore the growth of small online travel companies in the Middle East.
Check out these stories and many more, below.
— Isaac Carey, Travel Reporter
TravelPerk Offers Nearly Full Refunds to Corporate Travelers Who Cancel: So far the company is making good on its plans to innovate the corporate travel space. But offering refunds on this scale is a big promise to make.
Rise in Mobile Bookings in Middle East Creates New Online Travel Competition: Online travel in the Middle East is not an opportunity to be scoffed at, and smaller online travel outfits and travel search engines are flexing their muscles against established portals like Booking.com and TripAdvisor to capture the increasingly digital traveler.
Every Travel Tech Company Calls Itself a Platform: Why That’s Silly: Travel tech’s “platformania” may be cooling off. One reason is fiercer competition, according to a new study.
Lawsuit Challenges Barry Diller’s Future Control of Expedia: The odds are against this shareholder lawsuit against Barry Diller and the Expedia Group board doing anything to upend Diller’s ongoing control of the company, so look for a financial settlement. But the issues raised highlight why good governance groups abhor companies that don’t have truly independent directors.
The Future of Travel
Hyatt and Hilton Are Taking Different Branding Approaches Inside China: Hyatt is launching a new China brand while Hilton swears by the adage of introducing the right Hilton brand in the right location at the right time across China. Which of the two approaches is better?
EasyParcel Raises $10 Million for Delivery: We take a look at travel startups that have announced more than $216 million in funding. But the hot market deserves a warning that paraphrases Fleetwood Mac: Investors only love you when they’re investing. Funding will come and it will go. When the rain washes you clean you’ll know. You’ll know.
Newly Public Customer Feedback Firm Medallia Must Overcome Survey Fatigue: Medallia has pleased investors so far with the sales of its enterprise software for tracking customer feedback. But burnout on surveys is an industrywide problem, especially in travel. It remains an open question whether Medallia and its rival tech vendors can overcome the issue.
Skift Senior Enterprise Editor Andrew Sheivachman [[email protected]] curates the Skift Corporate Travel Innovation Report. Skift emails the newsletter every Thursday.
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Photo credit: Gare du Nord rail station in Paris, France. 351045 / 351045