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Thomas Cook India launches travel portal

Will target internet savvy leisure and corporate travellers
By Anita Jain | Mumbai

Thomas Cook (India) Ltd. launched www.thomascook.in, a complete travel portal offering end-to-end travel solutions for both B2B and B2C customers, in Mumbai today. The portal will offer hotel inventories from UK based hotels4u.com, which was acquired by Thomas Cook in February this year. The website aims at targeting the internet savvy leisure and corporate travellers, travel agents and partners who will be integrated with the offline business of Thomas Cook India. They will also offer travel and travel related financial services to its customers.

The website provides for online booking of travel insurance, 800 holiday packages including Thomas Cook’s own 100 per cent holiday packages and offers Rail Europe passes and tickets. Apart from this, the portal features over 750 domestic and international airlines, over 30,000 hotels and 30 cruises. With the introduction of a separate portal for the Indian market, the company is positive about its future growth.

Madhavan Menon, Managing Director, Thomas Cook (India) Ltd, said, “We are currently working on the plan and will soon be ready to offer the inventory of 30,000 hotel inventories from all over the globe through hotels4u.com. Also, after the introduction of the inventories in Indian market, clients will be able to book and pay online for their hotel bookings which is at present active only for flight booking.”

Giving an insight into the salient features of the website, Amitabh Pandey, President and Head, E-Business said, “This initiative will extend our reach enormously. Our portal offers a whole range of travel products and related financial services including domestic and international flight booking, foreign travel insurance, hotels, cruises and Rail Europe tickets and passes. This channel will significantly augment our extensive distribution network.”

He further added, “We are going to increase the volumes in the flights, hotels, travel insurance and packages section. For cruises, we will add more options through our parent company Thomas Cook, which offers the highest number of cruises in Europe. Along with increasing the inventory, we are also going to enhance our payment gateways on the portal.”

With a view of huge potential in internet banking in India, the company is putting in efforts to enhance the services online. “At present, only HDFC bank is online for internet banking, soon we are going to link up with more banks including ICICI bank. We also plan to introduce foreign exchange service online. We are facing certain government constraints on selling foreign exchange online in India, and hence are in talks with Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to look into the matter.”

Source : TravelBizMonitor.com

About Devesh Agarwal

A electronics and automotive product management, marketing and branding expert, he was awarded a silver medal at the Lockheed Martin innovation competition 2010. He is ranked 6th on Mashable's list of aviation pros on Twitter and in addition to Bangalore Aviation, he has contributed to leading publications like Aviation Week, Conde Nast Traveller India, The Economic Times, and The Mint (a Wall Street Journal content partner). He remains a frequent flier and shares the good, the bad, and the ugly about the Indian aviation industry without fear or favour.

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