In today's edition: Regatta in Barbados, linking up at Orbitz, happy birthday Getabed, Illusions in Thailand, trio join Room 77.
This is the regular Tnooz roundup of product news from around the travel, tourism and hospitality industry, all with a technology, online and digital twist - Friday 3 June 2011.
- The Barbados Hotel & Tourism Association unveiled BookBarbadosNow.com in conjunction with Regatta Travel Solutions. Regatta Travel Solutions powers the site with its OTA Software solution. The launch is in its initial phase and will provide reservations for hotels and activities, the DMO and technology companies say.
- American Airlines removed its flights from Orbitz.com last December in a dispute over economics and direct-connect technology, but when a judge on June 1 ordered that the fares return to Orbitz, American Airlines and Orbitz reconnected using a combination of an old form of direct-connect technology, called Supplier Link, as well as Travelport's Apollo and/or Worldspan GDSs. Supplier Link was used by some of Orbitz's founding airlines to access Orbitz.com and bypass GDSs. An American Airlines spokesman says the company is concerned that Orbitz, "as it did previously," will "drive transactions through the higher-cost GDS path."
- Blowing out the candles at UK-based Getabed, celebrating its 20th birthday this week with a revamped site and expansion of its product range. More than 400 hotels from mainland Spain and the islands have been added to the service, as well as a philanthropic initiative to donate a portion of each booking to a global water charity for the next 12 months.
- Landmark win for Illusions Online after securing a deal to run a full-suite technology service for Go Vacation Thailand. The deal with the DMO will see tools such as product management, hotel/services contracting, packages and back-to-back series, client profiles, booking engine, client and supplier documentation, accounts management and CRM integrated into its platform. The deal will be extended to include division serving Sri Lanka and Indonesia by 2012.
- Properties in the cities of Minneapolis, Palm Springs and Phoenix-Scottsdale were added to the Room 77 hotel room database and search engine this week. The latest total for the four month old company is 500,000 rooms in 24 cities in the US.