Skift Take

In Skift's top stories this week, Barbados creates its own online travel booking platform, Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky takes suggestions from Twitter followers about what the company should launch, and 2022 will likely see a large number of major deals in the hotel industry.

Throughout the week we are posting original stories night and day covering news and travel trends, including on the impact of coronavirus. Every weekend we will offer you a chance to read the most essential stories again in case you missed them earlier.

Barbados Builds Its Own Online Travel Booking Platform to Be a Game Changer: This is what action looks like, if Caribbean tourism is to build back better. Investment in technology, a solid private-public relationship, and homegrown talent driving the framework and the narrative.

What Should Airbnb Launch in 2022?: Worth a read, not just to appreciate the transparency into the product-led thinking of a giant, now-iconic company but also to just get inspired by some of these suggestions, and who knows, more startups to come out of these ideas.

Expect a Hotel Dealmaking Deluge This Year: With the two-year anniversary of the pandemic just around the corner, hotel companies are going to be eager to buy and sell around the premise the travel industry is settling into a new normal.

Here’s What Tourism Needs to Start Showing This Year: Two years of talking. Now’s the time for bold action.

Travel Resolutions for 2022: Top Picks From the Skift Staff: Let’s do this again. Last year was hit-and-miss on reaching our travel goals but as you will read, the Skift team doesn’t stop dreaming. Check out a fresh list of our aspirations for 2022. Here’s hoping we make all our connections, and that you do too in the new year.

Hipcamp Buys UK Booking Brand Cool Camping: Hipcamp, a booking site led by Alyssa Ravasio and backed by Andreessen Horowitz, seems intent on international expansion. The startup’s skill at creating supply, not just listing campsites, has set it apart and given it momentum so far.

Clear Buys Technology That Holds a Traveler’s Place in Line: By acquiring Argentinan vendor Whyline, Clear is doubling down on technology that allows travelers to reserve a spot in line when they check in for their flight. This “virtual queueing” tech could be used outside of airports, too, such as at attraction parks, in conference venues, and on cruise ships.

Inside Travelport’s Tech Revamp: Travelport has been running a slick marketing campaign about its innovations that showcases dancers and snowboarders. But we wanted the nerdy details about what’s technologically changing. So here’s the first in-depth interview with the company’s new tech chief.

Online Travel Faces Lots of Unfinished Business in 2022: Several travel-oriented, special purpose acquisition companies are out there that have not announced merger partners. A SPAC glut and the lackluster performance of several online travel or short-term rental companies that recently went public could have some of the hunters coming up empty.

What Makes Corporate Travel a Worthy Investment Now?: Behind the investor appetite as American Express Global Business Travel prepares to go public.

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Tags: airbnb, barbados, clear, hotels, mergers and acquisitions, online booking, online travel, travelport

Photo credit: A beach in Barbados, which has launched an online travel booking platform to help boost local businesses. PublicDomainPictures / Pixabay