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Direct bookings continue to be the most important distribution channel

TrekkSoft evaluates bookings with tour and activity providers

TrekkSoft evaluates bookings with tour and activity providers

The majority of tours and activities are still booked directly with providers. This is the result of an analysis by TrekkSoft, the largest supplier of booking and channel management software for tour and activity providers in Europe. Accordingly, direct providers are ahead of competing distribution channels such as online travel agents (OTAs).

In 2018 the TrekkSoft booking and distribution solution processed over 1.6 million bookings with tour and activity providers, mainly in Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean. In order to obtain an overview of the average distribution per channel, bookings were analysed according to turnover per sales channel.

Average distribution by individual provider was as follows: 72.5 per cent direct bookings, 16.6 per cent agents and partners, and 10.9 per cent OTAs, of which TripAdvisor Experiences (Viator) accounted for a total of six per cent and thus the majority of OTAs.

Commenting on the findings, Stephanie Kutschera, head of Marketing at TrekkSoft, said: “In a competitive market it will be comforting for tour and activity providers to know that their ’direct first‘ strategy is correct. Nevertheless, OTAs provide operators with a good opportunity to tap into new markets and increase their visibility. However, at the moment OTAs have a long way to go before they dominate this sector.”

She added: “OTAs are increasing their market share. The time has come for providers to establish a balanced distribution strategy, in order to ensure a long-term successful company, supported by OTA bookings.”

As part of the company’s involvement in the Technology, Tours & Activities market (TTA) Olan O’Sullivan, CEO of TrekkSoft, will be participating in a panel discussion on distribution strategies at the ITB Berlin Convention. He will be accompanied by Antony Lias, COO of the leading walking tour provider SANDEMANs New Europes. The lecture will take place on Wednesday, 6 March 2019 at 3 p.m. in Hall 7.1b at the eTravel Lab.

Commenting on the discussion, O’Sullivan said: “The latest industry buzzword is distribution, and rightly so, because the tours and activities sector is becoming more competitive. We have noticed that providers are increasingly sharing their experiences and want to learn from others. That is why this discussion provides an ideal platform.”

Hall 5.1, Stand 119



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