Wednesday, 6 February 2008

facing the final curtain

and now, the end is near.......
only an hour and a half to go and the show is winding down.
Thanks to MICROS travel for the free chocolate and Anteeo Solutions Ltd for the fruit. (fruit cancels out the calories in the chocolate - so all is well)


Did you hear about the cow that won the Nobel Prize?

He was out standing in his field.

Oh dear.

Chips and Wheels

this is my first experince into the world of travel idustry and I must say its an eye- and mind- opener to see the excitin prodcuts and service.

I guess balance is key here between what business needs and a procuts's promise. it's how to make the chips fall and wheels seemingly interact together that will drive any business ahead.

Good Luck!

Khaled AlAttar

So Many Solutions!

Having spent the last two days here (exhibiting) it's amazing to see how many solutions there are that claim they can revolutionise a travel business's performance.

But where do you start? Who do you trust? Which 'whiz-bang' solution is right for you?

It's especially difficult to answer the complicated questions when the simplest seem difficult to answer.

During a seminar about 'turning your web presence up a notch' including our MD Lewis Lenssen and representatives from Travletek and Nucleus, we couldn’t even reach reasonable consensus on the importance of images and how they should be used.

At the end of the day not every travel business is high end and needs beautiful hi res images to sell. No one size or solution fits all but some seminar speakers will have you believing that because it worked for their clients it must work for everyone. Not so I'm afraid.

We know all too well that just because we dramatically improved ROI for one client using interactive maps it doesn't mean it will work for the next.

Travel Technology is great because there are so many solutions on offer but we must all remember to wipe away the hype and get to what will really deliver improved returns for each unique business.


Two down, two to go

We've had two great Travolution-led seminars this morning. Good debate - excellent presentations.

Two more to go: "It's Marketing, Jim, But Not As We Know It" and "Starting Up Again".

Be there...

I was forced to do this by the blond on the stand

Fantastic opportunity to source all the information I need under 1 roof.

Paul Wilson
Fans Go Ltd

Screen-scraping gets kicked into touch

Here's a thought on preventing screen-scraping raised by Andrew Knott, Global's IT director.

He suggests we might see the likes of easyJet and Ryanair putting one of the those funny words in for users to type before getting into price and availability.

Seems simple and effective but wouldn't it just be one more step for consumers?


Excellent presentation from Commingator this morning - we certainly learned a lot about how to send our newsletter out next time. Maybe we'll exhibit next year and present on international search behaviour in the Travel business.
Oban Multilingual

Last Day

Everyone seems a bit subdued today - late night last night guys?

Day Two!

One more day to go.

Travolution seminars run all day...

CarTrawler won the innovation award last night. Well done to them. Shame COO Bobby Healy left 30 minutes beforehand to catch a flight.

Tuesday, 5 February 2008


Word is that there is less footfall this year and therefore it's becoming expensive to be here compared with WTM.

TTS attracts VCs shock

What's new at TTS? Venture capitalists are around. It seems travel tech has come up in the world!

DP - where will it all end?

Three or more years on we're still all going on about DP so much so that even the staff at the TTS/Earls Ct coffee bars are DP branded, as pointed out by Mark Bradbury from RWA.

Go see for yourselves!


Am so impressed by Shaeran Thomas - even though England lost - she is a superb advert for the Welsh.......come on the Taffies

Kevin Abbott

Skiguru goes to Travel Tec

Turned up at the show eager to see what is new in the web-marketing world. Armed with my ticket to the WEB 2.0 Seminar, how nice to see everyone queuing politely... The queue is an English artform! The speakers got underway with an in-sight into the developement of viral advertising and the use of social networking sites from Francesca of, followed by a mouthwatering view on the development of from Jerome, and topped off with a behind the scenes look at with Nathan... The main message to come out of it is that, as always, if you want to make a difference, you have to think outside of the box, that businesses need inspirational ideas at every link in the chain, and whereas in the old days, your message took time to filter though to the market, now, your message can be in every living room at the click of a mouse....
Enjoy the show, visit me at for more thoughts...

Terrapinn in Travel Tech

Travel Tech is a great forum in which to do business. Would write more, but have to get back to networking....

MyBookingWeb Blog

Hello there, I'm Valieriy Slysarenko, and this is the first entry on my blog of Travolution :)

Going mobile

Top 5 facts from this morning's session on mobile travel for the cynics out there:

*Amongst iPhones recently developed applications 42 are travel centric

* More than £400m was invested in mobile advertising in 2006 and research shows that the figure will hit £10bn in the next three years

* There are 70m mobile subscribers in the UK (3bn worldwide by the end of 2008)

* 74% of all users of mobile internet are over the age of 30

* Google mobile is the number one mobile service in the UK

So, loads of problems in terms of networks, handsets etc. but still some convincing numbers.

Linda Fox, lead reporter, Travolution

Busy day

Started out with a brisk walk from Kensington, then dozed off at the OTA lectures.

Luch, english pie, then the exhibition. Lots of people, lots of stands. An impressive gathering of technology companies, offering several interesting products, and very willing to answer questions from a stay foreigner.

Great show!

Future tech seminar

An interesting seminar-
However a few points - 1) Travel needs to look to the future of tech and what other industries are using, not rely on it fitting their pre-concieved business plans
2) Internet fatigue - could it really be that many travel sites dont have the content and functionality that make a user enjoy their site - afterall if users suffered from fatigue then PPC, Digg, StumbleUpon, Twitter, would all be loosing users not gaining them.

Overall an interesting show- but remarkebly few companies talking about SEO, PPC etc without simply saying "its web 2.0" as if thats a magic fix it pill... visit the travel tech for the first time!

Travel Tech show has been a great way to find partners to work with on our Travel mapping solutions. Its been interesting to see what is already in the market and explore the future possibilities in a new and exciting technology.

Brian Norman
Technical Director

Prize for most hi-tech looking stand goes to...

Nice Show

It is the first time for me attending this show,
it is really nice and busy.
i like to visit it again next year

Osama Kofahi

I don't know where I'm going...

We've been wandering around for about half an hour now. The highlights have been the interesting Galileo solutions Navitas do and a chicken club sandwich.

No other stands have really grabbed me yet apart from one where a lady made me write this...

Off to the expert panel discussion thingy later to see what the experts have to say for themselves.

It seems quite busy

The show seems somewhat busier so far than the first morning of the show last year.

Maybe online travel is set to buck the economic trend, as confidence (well bravado at least) seems high at TTS.

new chief executive at ostoratravel

I'd like the show to be a bit bigger, but I've only just got here.

Quotoid #1

Alas, anonymous:
The thing you need to do here at Travel Technology Show is go round with a
clutch of dynamic packaging solution brochures in your hand.

"You can bet any money you like that the next provider will talk about

Top tip?

We're not so sure...

You really can't miss us this year

Monday, 4 February 2008

See you tomorrow!

Pack those bags.

Remember the good walking shoes.

Read our - semi-serious - checklist.

Travolution has its infamous blogging space at the event again, so make sure you come along to 1) introduce yourself and 2) write a brief post about the show.

Lead reporter Linda Fox and editor Kevin May will be at the show on editorial duties. Charlotte Davies and her team will also be there to evangalise about the UK's best online travel and technology media brand (Copyright 2005-2008).

Until tomorrow...

Friday, 1 February 2008

Exhibitor list revealed

So here it is: exhibitor list for the show.

AffiliateFuture - C48
Anite Travel Systems - C21
Anteeo Solutions Ltd - A14
AO International - C12
Astratis Group - C18
Atolis - A27
Avvio - A31
Berkley IT - C53
Bewotec - B45
Biznet IIS Ltd - C14
Blue Star - A36
Bluesky Travel Systems - C33
Boss Marketing - D30
Car Trawler - C15
Cellictica Ltd - D23
Click With Technology Ltd - D45
Codegen Ltd - B15
Communigator - B09
Comtec Europe - A09
Cornerstone Info Systems - B55
CSI Media - C44
Datalex - B56
Dataworld Systems - D18
Didon Solutions Uk Ltd - A46
Dinstinctive Systems Ltd - A52
Dolphin Dynamics - C19
DPMC - D43
Emailcenter UK Limited - D25
Etelligent - A32
Fizzback Group - A25
Globe Track - A45
Go Quo - B26
Hitchhiker/Gateway - B43
Hypertech Solutions - B37
IBS Software Services - C43
IGM Web - B30
InterGlobe Technologies UK - D27
Intuitive Systems - C26
Kelworth Ltd - D33
KnowledgeWire Systems Ltd - A44
Lixto Software GmbH - A20
Logiciels OpenFares Inc - D31
Mayos - C27
Metafour - B30
Micros Travel - A12
Modcomp - A60
Multicom - D48 - B39
Navitas Solutions - C50
Nedstat - A21
Neolane - C17
Net Guides - D54
Netbooster - A57
Netizen Digital - D26/29
Netviewer Gmbh - C36
Nexusnepal Private Ltd - A42
Northway Communications - A55
Open Destinations - B33
Open Travel Alliance - A24
OpenJaw Tech - B44
Osprey Software Ltd - D35
PAF - A33
Partners Software - C32
Pertot Systems - A43
Pipex Business - A37
Pregem Airline Solutions - A26
Pro Eq Ltd - B54
QuadLabs - A38
Real Ex Payments - C08
Rescompany Systems Ltd - B24
Retail Decisions Europe Ltd - B32
Rezgateway - B51
Right Now Technologies - C55
RWA - C45
Sapphire Systems - A48
Site Confidence - B36
Southfield - A51
Stibo Catalog - B07
Stortext FM - D50
Techturners - D14
The Bird Group - A30
The Vertical Group - C54
Top Dog Developments Ltd - D20
Tourplan - C51
Trailstream - C31
Travel Automation - D15
Travel Software Ltd - A16
Travel Technology Systems - B27
Travel UCD - A49
Travelmarket - A03
TravelTainment (UK) Ltd - B25
Traveltek - A54
Traverses Associations - D52
Viatecla Software - C30
Web Applications UK Ltd - C39
Ypsilon Net AB - B21

Thursday, 31 January 2008

Free seminar! But first come first served!

There are just a five days to go, fellow delegates!

Apart from the Travolution seminar sessions, another highlight is expected to be the Expert Panel Discussion on the first day of the show.

Lining up on stage for the session will be:
Making sure they all behave will be Andy Boyce, director, Travology.

It's a free session! You just need to make sure you're there early at the presentation theatre between 1pm and 2.45pm.

Wednesday, 30 January 2008

10 questions to ask a tour operator reservation system supplier

A guest post from Alex Bainbridge of Travel UCD:

Next week in London is the annual Travel Technology Show… Now for us travel technology geeks this is high pressure stuff. Not only do we get to pretend we know something about Sales and marketing (!) - but we have to expose to our friends and competitors what we have been up to for the last 12 months.

I am going to be both exhibiting (Stand A49 TourCMS - don’t miss it!) and talking at a seminar on the Wednesday. (Please come - I might be in a seminar about legacy systems - but I will be talking about the future!)

For me in the last 12 months I have been busy busy busy. The “consulting” side of what I do is undisclosed…. I like remaining a “back room boy” for some of the larger UK travel companies.

Being a “back room boy” I have been involved (indeed project managed!) a number of tour operator reservation system change projects. From experience, these tend to be hell. This is because not only do you have to manage expectations (both positive that the new system will be amazing, but negative because some people’s jobs are no longer necessary) but also get projects delivered on time and on budget.

So if you are going to the show next week and are looking for a new system - here are my top 10 questions to ask a potential system supplier:
  • Are developments to the core system possible to be undertaken by customer request? If you have a need for a particular development - can you request a development?
  • What proportion of your developments are instigated by customers vs the system supplier? - I like to see a share of, say, 50%/50% between developments that the customers want vs those that the system supplier wants. (Remember that the system supplier will want developments that increase potential sales whilst existing customers want developments that help fix their existing business challenges)
  • If you pay for a core system development - how long do you retain competitive advantage? Some suppliers say that if you pay 100% for a development you can “lock out” competitors for 18 months. If you pay 50% of a development cost - you can lock out competitors on the same system for 12 months (Often enough to push a competitor to using a specific development the season behind you)
  • How often are new releases “released”? - If these are too often (for example every couple of months) - what onus is there on you signing off these new releases - or does the system supplier guarantee that your existing business processes will not be impacted by new releases? If this is too often and you have to sign off before this new release is given to you, will the testing time be too onerous?
  • Is the system supplier based on bubble economics? For some system suppliers, new customers (and all their professional service fees) subsidise many of the exiting staff in a company however these staff supply services to existing customers. If a system supplier has a business model based on bubble economics relying on a constant flow of new customers this can be a problem for the long term validity of a company - especially if the market is stagnant or reducing?
  • Where does the money they invest in Research & Development come from? Some UK system suppliers get many of their developments paid for by very large travel companies - however in the UK these companies are busy merging and standardising on their reservation systems. If the company you are considering has been happy taking money from these companies, what happens if these R&D funds dry up?
  • What is the 5 year plan for the system? Frankly, no one will answer this - however it is fun to ask and watch everyone’s faces
  • What is the DNA of the software? Systems that have come from a travel agency background are often no good for tour operators and vice versa
  • What are you average professional service fee day rates? Some UK system suppliers have “offshore” (Sri Lanka etc) project teams. These can often be great value. Some are based in London. They are not such good value.
  • How is your system better than TourCMS that I can get for £50 GBP per month? Yes. Ask them. I dare you (Obviously many systems have greater functionality than TourCMS…. the question is whether that is worth the price difference).
DISCLOSURE - Yes I own a system supplier. No I am not a journalist. This isn’t always an impartial blog. Never mind. Time to move on.

[Read more from Alex's blog - Musings on travel ecommerce - Ed]

Monday, 28 January 2008

A message from the organisers… what to do if you have not yet received your badge?

Those who have registered for the Travel Technology Show should receive their badges in the mail or sometime this week.

If you don’t receive your badge for any reason or misplace it, don’t worry there is a backup…

We will email you an electronic badge on Monday 4 February which you can print out and take with you to the show and get your official badge printed.

If you don’t have access to your email and still haven’t received your badge by the show this is still not a problem, please simply print out your email confirmation from when you registered for the show and we’ll be able to look you up in the system and print you a new badge.

Trust us, it’s not a problem!

Please remember if you have registered we will have you on our records so although it is better to bring your electronic or mail badge with you, you will still be able to enter with no troubles if you don’t!

Also just a reminder that if any of your colleagues have forgotten to register, they still can, please click here for free registration.

The postman has arrived

Many of you will have received a letter this morning with your delegate pass for the Travel Technology Show.


[As you can see from the picture, we are also showing off our new dual-screen set-up at Travolution Towers!]

Friday, 25 January 2008

Checklist for the Travel Technology Show

With just 10 days or so to go, it's time to set you all up with a list of things you need to remember.

  • Delegate pass - you're not getting in otherwise
  • Accommodation - if you're from out of town and staying for both days
  • Business cards - essential and obvious
  • Bottle of water - it might be February, but it gets warm in Earl's Court 2
  • Strong shoes - you'll be sorry if you don't
  • Seminar programme - better still, book now
  • Stand furniture - it will look bare without it
  • Promotional materials and brochures - what else are you going to give delegates?
  • Laptops - to show off that new product!
  • Drinks and nibbles - for you delegates
  • Exhibitor pass - the boss will be very unhappy if you forget it
  • Accommodation - you'll be exhausted after Day One

Thursday, 24 January 2008

Quotoids #1

"I come every year to keep up-to-date with the latest developments in travel technology."

"We were in the process of getting a new reservations system. We wanted to check that we were contacting the right suppliers."

"I'm new to the travel industry, I wanted to bring myself up-to-speed with what is happening and what's likely to happen in the future."

"It’s essential for networking, various meetings, seminars and general information gathering."

Wednesday, 23 January 2008

Blatant self-promotion for seminars

We can because we're running the blog...

Seriously, it's two weeks today until the Travolution-run seminars at the show.

Our fantastic line-up on Wednesday 6 February is as follows:

9.45-11.00: If Only I Could Create the Perfect Travel Website… - Two design agencies offer their tips on how to engage users with the next generation of travel websites, explaining the subtle differences for prospective online operators and agencies.

Jason Till, digital production director, Designate Communications
Justin Cooke, managing director, Fortune Cookie

11.15-12.30: Integrating the Old Into the New – Understand how legacy platforms, constantly under pressure to integrate booking and reservation systems into an array of channels, can be overhauled to meet the needs of modern consumers and travel companies.

Alex Bainbridge, managing director, Travel UCD
Ornagh Hoban, vice president marketing and strategy, Datalex

14.15-15.30: It’s Marketing, Jim, But Not As We Know It – Learn how best to evaluate where to spend the valuable advertising pounds, as travel companies look to reach consumers in as many ways as possible over the web including organic search, PPC, display and social media.

Duncan Parfitt, head of paid search, Steak Media
Warren Cowan, chief executive, Greenlight
Nick Hayward, strategic development director, Latitude

15.45-17.00: Starting-up again – Re-invention, an influx of capital, turning plans into action? Learn about the pitfalls and how to turn a bright idea for the web into a real business.

Ranjan Singh, chief executive, Isango
James Dunford Wood, co-founder and managing director,

Further details on these and other seminars over the course of the two days can be found on the main TTS website.

Monday, 21 January 2008

It's A Quiz!

If the Travel Technology Show’s schedule looks daunting, take this quiz to find out which seminars and exhibitors will best serve your needs.

What can new information technologies do for my business?
  • A. I know it can help my business, but I’m not sure where to start.
  • B. We’ve made some investments, but want to learn more to turn them into profit.
  • C. I want to get ahead of the competition with more investment.
Web 2.0 is the much-hyped future of the world wide web. What does it mean to you?
  • A. What’s the world wide web?
  • B. It’s all about social networking.
  • C. It’s about creating ‘mashable’ websites, such as combining Google maps with your own content, like Opodo does.
Why is XML important for the way businesses use the web in future?
  • A. What’s wrong with the way businesses use the Internet?
  • B. It’s the new version of HTML.
  • C. It helps different software systems to talk to each other over the Internet.
Does your approach to marketing include Internet search engines?
  • A. No, we do our marketing in the shop window and local newspaper.
  • B. No, we’d like to start using the Internet for marketing but don’t know how.
  • C. Yes, but we’re always looking to improve our search engine optimisation.
Do you plan to integrate electronic marketing and distribution with your back-end systems?
  • A We don’t have electronic marketing or distribution.
  • B. It sounds like a good idea, but we don’t know where to start.
  • C. It’s part of our plan, but there are a few hurdles to overcome before we get there.
Do you plan to offer podcasts on your website?
  • A. What is a podcast?
  • B. I listened to the one by Ricky Gervais, but I don’t know how it would apply to us.
  • C. We’re just starting out podcasting and would like to learn more.
How can mobile phones help us get feedback on our service?
  • A. I haven’t got time to take the calls.
  • B. I’ve heard about automated text services.
  • C. We’re looking at automated texts but not sure on our strategy yet.
What effect will user-generated content, such as TripAdvisor, have on the travel industry?
  • A. I’m not sure what user-generated content is.
  • B. I don’t see where they fit with my business.
  • C. Pretty soon everyone will check their destination on TripAdvisor before booking.
How did you score?

Mostly A
You are likely to be fairly new to technology, so rather than diving in at the deep end, you might prefer to learn about some examples of how technology has helped travel firms. The seminar titled Real-life Stories from the Travel Industry Coalface will help. It’s on February 5, from 3.45pm to 5pm.

If you have more specific questions on technology and your business, Equinus and will be running the Advice Centre, offering free technology advice. Pre-book consultations by e-mail.

Mostly B
Those with some experience might want to know where it’s all heading. Facebook hit the headlines last year and people are asking how social networking sites will affect travel businesses. Find the Building Travel Brands Using Web 2.0 discussion from 11.15am to 12.30pm on February 5.

If you’re already using the Internet as a commercial tool, but want to get more from it, why not try the session How to Find Fulfilment from E-business. It will address subjects such as how to link e-brochures to the booking system, integrate the delivery of e-vouchers and tickets, and set up alerts that can be directed to mobile phones. It’s on February 6 from 2.15pm to 3.30pm.

Mostly C
Those more expert in travel technology might want to plan ahead for the future. You can find out the predictions of experts from Anite Travel Systems, Dolphin Dynamics and HyperTech Solutions during Future Travel Technology Needs from 12.45pm-2pm on February 5.

If you’ve already got a strong Internet presence but want to improve your hit rate, then delve into the world of search engine marketing. The Searching for the Perfect Search Engine Marketing Strategy session looks at search-engine optimisation and pay-per-click, offering advice on best-practice. It’s on February 6 from 12.45pm to 2pm.

Show preview in Travel Weekly

Travolution's sister paper Travel Weekly has produced a handy guide to some of the product launches expected over the course of the event.

The article features SABS, KnowledgeWire, GoQuo, Amadeus, Fizzback, RWA and Hypertech.

Read more on the "Tech a look at this" article [geddit?!?].

Friday, 18 January 2008

Coffee breaks can be much better organised now

This just in:

Delegates can sign up for a smart tool on the Travel Technology Show website which can be used to arrange meetings and find out who's who on the exhibition floor.

More details about NET-work and a sign-up form.

Thursday, 17 January 2008

First commenter

Congratulations to Alex Bainbridge of Travel UCD for being the first exhibitor to post a comment to the blog.

A free speaking slot on one of the seminars to you, sir.

Oh, Bainbridge is already appearing... one of the Travolution sessions on Wednesday 6!

Wednesday, 16 January 2008

Why should I attend?

Here are some pretty good reasons for those still mulling over whether to spend two days in London at the beginning of February.

If you make or influence the decision for purchasing technology within your company, be it a business or leisure travel agent, online travel agent, tour operator, hotelier or transport company, then it could be the most useful 48 hours you'll spend this year.

Discover and evaluate technology to:
  • Increase or create online revenue
  • Enable your customers to transact effectively
  • Increases website functionality and effectiveness
  • Improves the look to book ratios
  • Maximises internet search engine, banner and marketing spend
  • Boost revenue from existing customers
  • Save costs by streamlining back office booking administration
  • Manage product pricing across multiple distribution channels
  • Processes commission payments and updates inventory automatically
  • Reduces company IT overheads
  • Allow seamless integration between sales, marketing and customer service
It's true, it really is... We've been before!

Travel Technology Show Factoids #1

The kind folk at TTS have sent us some facts and figures to demonstrate what a stonkingly good event it is.
  • Over 120 exhibitors are expected for the 2008 show. [Are your favourite travel technology companies listed?]
  • 15 seminars.
  • 75% of the exhibitor space for this year's show was booked at the 2007 event.

Three weeks to go

For the uninitiated, Travel Technology Show is the the premier event of the year dedicated to all things travel and, er, technology - taking place this year on 5 and 6 February.

And, for the second year in a row, Travolution, the UK's premier (read: only) media brand dedicated to online travel and technology, is delighted to be an exclusive media partner with its sister title Travel Weekly.

So with just three weeks to go until the travel industry descends on a small corner of West London - Earl's Court II, in fact (here's a map) - there is some housekeeping to get out of the way.

The ticketless can still book a place easily for the event on the main TTS site's online registration page.

Meanwhile, over the coming weeks we will focus here on the blog on some of the topics to be covered in the seminars. You can take a look at the seminar programme now and - rather handily - book a seat.


This is the official blog of the Travel Technology Show 2008, provided by Travolution.

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