I just sat down with Dani Essindi, co-founder of Tripjane.com, a new online travel agency that intends to use only social media websites such as Facebook, Linked In and MySpace to connect user reviews with bookable travel like flights and hotels.
What suprises me the most is that non of the other big boys like Orbitz.com, Expedia or Travelocity have jumped into this space.Â Yes – they have social mediaÂ apps, but non of them incorporate trip planning, reviews, transaction and itinarary building – using your personal network connections as the “trusted” sources of reviews. Â The transaction actually occurs without leaving Facebook (or Linked In, MySpaceÂ or whatever social network you are using).
TripJane isÂ officially launching on December 2/08, but the beta is up and ready to go with inventory for flights.Â (you can even customize your research process filtering out airlines, times etc.)Â Once fullyÂ launched the app will have Hotel inventory, itinarary building, and integration with your regular profile page. (This would be ideal for me as I drive all of my Facebook “friends” crazy with random images of my travels that seem to just appear on my Facebook page without any relevant “story” of where I am and what I am doing!)
Why do I think this will grow? Co-Founder Dani Essindi said it best – just “go where the users are” – sorry if I am giving away any trade secrets Dani!Â
[tags]Â Â tripjane, trip jane, social media, travel planning, travel itinarary, travel trends, phocuswright, usergenerated content, online travel agencyÂ [/tags]Â