Online bidding platform Travelio lets Asian tourists negotiate hotel prices
Thu 26 Mar 2015
Indonesian-based contractor and property developer PT Surya Semesta Internusa (SSIA) has this week launched the new online hotel booking portal, Travelio, which seeks to jump on board with the country’s booming travel and leisure market.
The service, which promotes the slogan ‘Your trip, your price,’ will enable individuals to bid for their hotel rooms online. The concept is not new, with western sites such as U.S. Priceline.com compounding at 38.50% annually over the past ten years using the same negotiator model. However, for the Asia Pacific region the idea is a new experience for many.
Co-founder Christina Suriadjaja said that the website would allow users to pick their preferred hotel brand and negotiate around a price that they are willing to pay per night. If the price entered is too low, the user receives an auto-reject notification and must re-enter an alternative price.
If the price is accepted, the user will receive an automatic approval message. If the offer however is lower than the hotel is hoping before but is still considered to be acceptable. In this case, the user must wait 24 hours for a manual approval from the hotel. Once the price is agreed on, users are able to pay across Travelio with credit cards or internet and bank transfers.
Hendry Rusli, managing director at Travelio, said that he was hopeful for a successful launch explaining that there was a bright outlook for online hotel booking services nationally. Indonesia currently counts 44 million internet users, and 12% book accommodation online.
“We will first target the Indonesian market, but we definitely want to scale-up our business,” said Rusli.
For the moment Travelio lists around 5,000 hotels on its websites from destinations across Asia, including Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Hong Kong and South Korea. Speaking today alongside the Indonesian minister of tourism, Arief Yahya, at the venture’s launch, Rusli said that the website had received approximately 2,000 page views and had been processing an average of two transactions a day.
SSIA is one of the largest publicly traded construction and hospitality groups in the Malay Archipelago and operates four five-star hotels in Indonesia; Gran Melia Jakarta, Melia Bali Hotel, Banyan Tree Ungasan Resort and Batiqa Karawang.