Archive for December 30th, 2006

AirlineMeals. Net – Another good travel content site

Always wondered should i order special meals before flying on a new airline or be in look out for their in flight menu. helps you to answer this question. It has collection of airlines in flight menus and offerings. But this is not the best part. The best part is the pics posted online of meals from various airlines by various travellers. They dont have any indian airlines like Air India or Jet airways doing international routes yet. But hopefully travellers like us will share contents for improving knowledge via medium of Internet.

It has surely help me to decide my dining in on plane strategy šŸ™‚


This is the last pending post which has taken more than 20 days to get published.

Update :They do have air-india with 119 posts. They dont have what crew gets to eat for air-india.Ā 

Do Travel Agents in India need GDS like Amadeus, Galileo, Sabre

Starting a travel agency in india 2-3 years back was like joining a Country Club where you would need to know people or worked with people who were members to get in. Country club which we are talking about here is IATA which still has its own policies like

– Training to be completed to become a travel agent

– Fees for joining in etc.

It was a pre-requisite which was needed to complete before you could get a GDS like Galilieo, Amadeus installed at your place to access travel deals to offer to customers. Now first of all its important to make people understand GDS is not a technology solution for a travel agency, its a business solution as you cannot tie up with each individual airlines hence companies like galileo and amadeus negotiate comission structure with Airlines,Hotels etc and pass on buck to agent. Now in india what these companies have done is made compulsary for a travel agent to be offered services to be member of IATA (hence the term used as country club).

But past couple of months its been interesting to look how non- IATA travel agents have been growing and volume of travel e-commerce transactions is consituted by them. With advent of low cost airlines and their decision not to be part of any GDS (code of conduct for all low cost airlines ask them to do so) its become easier for agents to just register with them directly by depositing small cash amount of 25,000 INR and get discounts directly. As india does not have large number of airlines and travel agents based on their location and depending/selling one airline more than others. Its interesting to see how GDS has been bypassed completely.

Online travel agents are also trying to fill the gap by becoming a GDS in themselves once they have created substantial customer base by themselves to negotiate good pricing structure from these low cost airlines. So if you wish to start a travel agency just have a look at following check list

– Computer

– Broadband

– Telephone

– Money deposited with 2 low cost airlines

– If you got more money than get Indian Airlines. Trust me one of the most easiest to sell as people ask for it.

Update 2nd Jan 2007:

Thanks to all people for posting feedback. But the idea of the post is Travel Agents need in india. Keeping in mind everyone is talking about domestic ticketing volumes and new low cost airlines in india not interested nor part till day of GDS systems available. Its possible for agents to survive without being part of the GDS on offer today. Even big travel portals are not concerned on being dependent on GDS and they are trying to make their systems directly integrate with airlineĀ  systems to get share of domestic ticketing volumes. So though you may right in terms of international travel booking i know companies personally doing volumes on domestic airlines and servicing clients locally without being part of GDS.

Keep Reading šŸ™‚ – Check the site before flying International

If you know which airline you will be flying and our concerned which seat you will land up with as last time you flew you were seated near the toilets and couldnt get any sleep with passengers standing on your head all the time or want to sit near the food pantry so that next time airline decides to run out of vegetarian meals on board you were one of them few lucky one served. Everytime we meet a traveller he/she does have a story to share on how they could have been better of if they knew which seat they would be getting and where its in the plane.

Now this site cant say if it can help with ensuring a seat but atleast telling you about plane you are going to fly and which seat is where with its good and bad. This let you pre-determine which seat you will request when you reach the airline counter at airport.Ā  As they cover singapore airlines its been a big help especially i know which plane they fly on Delhi-Singapore route.

Go check out seatguru.comĀ 

2006 Year of Online Travel Portals in India

As 2006 comes to an end its a great pleasure to announce that most of the news and blogposts on online e-commerce happening in india were dominated by travel portals. From VC funding to gaining e-commerce transaction shares. Travel portals maintained their share of dominance. This also brought good news for startup airlines. As more avenues of sales opened up and their idea to by pass travel agents to offer cheaper tickets to customer also gained solidification.

In this blog we covered following Travel Portals – Reliance Capital, TV 18 backed venture with a good experienced management team from travel industry – Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Sherpalo Ventures. Another good non travel industry team but good e-commerce sense – Dont remember their backers but apparently quietest one among all the portals. – I like their design its a travel portal design which i would like to have if i start one selling reservations online. Clear simple with deals listed beatuifully in right panel. The organization is backed by offline travel agency and VC money offcourse. – Everyone talks about them as they are the oldest in sector (wrong read my post about them) – They have been making noises on how they are also competition in online travel business – Just never sure in which direction are they trying to move. Their site still needs lot of work – One of the oldest player which gave run for its money.

Travel Deal Aggregators – backed by company which is technology provider to

Offline Travel Agents online foray’s covered

Travelport India

As you can see i have listed more than 10 travel portals which were covered on this blog excluding the bigwigs like thomas cook , SOTC etc. How much competition already exist in this market .Other than above we also covered cool travel 2.0 applications for both travellers and travel agents to take advantage of . Will keep covering more portals as they keep comming up.

With end of last business day of new years i can rest assure and goto sleep by saying we covered all the major news maker travel portals on this blog with real insight on what benefits they could provide to travellers looking for deals online.

Effect of Blogs on Search Engine – Blog as product promotion tool

I never understood the power of blogging till i actually started my own blog in 2004. But even then blogging was just another tool to post answers to common question i was asked on study abroad forums. 2 Months ago when i finally got bored of answering same and same questions again and again. Decided to use power of blogging to satisfy my own intellect to post answers to questions i wanted to ask. So blog gave me a diary where i could start a question and answer it myself. Kind of challenge if you may see.

But since i started this blog i have been researching all aspects of blogging begining from why do 10 people i dont know have subscribed to my blog via RSS feed. Why 100 new visitors are added every day to my growing readership of my blog and finally the biggest question of all. Why does dal makhni and sanjeev kapoor as a keyword bring lot of people to my blog.

Blog from being a tool to post your thoughts online has become an effective marketing tool. With search engines like google emphasizing on freshness of content and number of people reading/visiting the page. Blog posts have risen up in search engine rankings against your corporate page offering services. Every time we run a search the possibility of running into a blog post increases after the first page. Is this a matter of concern. From a blogger perspective no as i like to see stats swear up everyday, it gives a sense of satisfaction but as a consultant helpin peopleĀ  define e-commerce strategy (without using google AD’s) its sad.Ā  The reason people are not finding what they are looking or they are finding what they are looking for but approaching someone with a pre-formated opinion courtsey a blog post they got the link from. Which is not good forĀ  company the reason either we should have a rating system for blogs to determine credibility and certify persons knowledge on topic.

What i have learnt from the blogging world if you are so worried of people getting harmed from your advice, just put a disclaimer and all onus of responsibility is taken off. I have personally communicated with someone from the management team of most of the travel portals covered on my blog. Though my commentry is not based on my discussion with them its more from a user perspective. I am working on a travel portal on my own visaonnet.comĀ  but its in no competition with yatra,cleartrip,flightraja etc. If possible i would like to use their booking engines at backend. The idea with the blog is to make people aware of better ways to use these travel portals and also for the travel portal managers to improve their product to built the online travel market moreĀ  strong.

So next time you find my blog from travel 2.0 keyword or dal makhni. Please rest assure you will find 60% post on online travel industry and only 1 on Dal makhni.

Contact Details Call Me :+91-9910444460
December 2006