Skift Take

Amazon bowed out of the hotel business a couple of times, is dabbling with flight bookings in India, and seems to have found a sweet spot in cheap, virtual experiences. With all of those tour operator partners now in the fold, post-pandemic, in-person tours and activities is likely on the to-do list.

Series: Dennis' Online Travel Briefing

Dennis' Online Travel Briefing

Editor’s Note: Every Wednesday, Executive Editor and online travel rockstar Dennis Schaal will bring readers exclusive reporting and insight into the business of online travel and digital booking, and how this sector has an impact across the travel industry.

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Online Travel This Week Over the past week, we've traced the challenges of Airbnb Experiences and the evolution of TUI Musement in tours and activities, and there's another new player — Amazon — that will seemingly be around for awhile, too, albeit under a new CEO, Andy Jassy, named on Tuesday. After soft-launching virtual experiences under its Amazon Explore brand four months ago, Amazon has built up its roster of online experiences from tour operators, and is apparently putting pressure on them to lower prices, with many going for less than $50. Amazon, after all, is known for discounted pricing, and these cheap rates could bring in new customers and introduce them to Amazon as a virtual tour booking site. Amazon's latest discounting foray includes offering about at least a dozen virtual experiences for $10. While not all are necessarily "travel" experiences in a strict sense, each is related to better understanding destinations. They range from Legends, Myths and Alchemy in Historic Prague, run by Intrepid Urban Adventure