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Creating a global electronic marketplace for travel requires standards that enable learning, shopping, and booking across a multitude of points-of-sale. While some standards have been established, most segments are still too fragmented and there is still much to be done. What are the next steps, and who will make them happen? A leader in electronic commerce, the travel industry was able to distribute its products and services electronically years before the Internet revolution. Yet the associated technology was expensive and available only to the larger players. The Internet lowered e-commerce barriers with cheap, ubiquitous communications and technology, and created the potential for a global electronic marketplace for travel. However, to make this marketplace a reality, standards must be in place to enable travel learning, shopping and booking across a multitude of suppliers, intermediaries and points-of-sale. The travel industry has established the OpenTravel Alliance (OpenTravel) and other standards bodies to facilitate travel e-commerce, but to date, efforts are fragmented and still far from enabling a true electronic marketplace. Leaders in the travel industry need to step back and examine alternative approaches to standards, assess the economic trade-offs, and decide collectively how to proceed: either by recommitting to and reforming current standards efforts, or abandoning them and letting the free market determine which standards stick.
Table of Contents
Other Hotel Industry Standards Efforts
- Car Rental
- Conventions and Meetings
The Travel Technology Initiative
What About the Travel Industry?
Call to Action
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