Travel Development

Must Have Features for a bespoke Custom Travel Portal Development

Did you know that investing in business travel could significantly boost your company’s revenue? A study by Oxford Economics reveals that for every $1 spent on business travel, companies see about $12.50 in incremental revenue. It’s noteworthy that eliminating business travel could lead to a 17% drop in profits in just the first year. This underscores the vital role of business travel in driving revenue growth. Moreover, the study highlights that without face-to-face meetings, businesses risk losing up to 28% of their current dealings

Given these insights, it’s obvious to conclude that investing in custom travel portals can pay dividends in the long run. Custom Travel Portal Development enhance the overall user experience, foster brand loyalty, and elevate customer satisfaction. By tailoring services to individual preferences, custom travel portals can significantly boost customer engagement and retention. Continue reading to learn all about what makes a custom travel portal successful. We’ll take a closer look at what sets apart a truly successful custom travel portal from the rest.

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Why Your Travel Business Needs a Custom Travel Portal?

Let’s say a potential customer is researching their dream vacation. They come across as two options.

  • Travel Agency A: Relies solely on phone calls and emails, making the booking process cumbersome and time-consuming.
  • Travel Agency B: Offers a custom travel portal development – a user-friendly online platform showcasing travel packages, destinations, and booking options.

Which agency seems more trustworthy and efficient? Here’s why a custom travel portal development can be crucial for your business.

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1. Building Credibility with Customers

  • Trust Factor: A user-friendly and informative custom travel portal development significantly boosts your credibility among potential customers. It serves as a testament to your professionalism and attention to detail.
  • User Experience: An intuitive interface and seamless navigation encourage users to explore more, potentially increasing the likelihood of bookings. A positive initial interaction can make them repeat visitors.

2. Enhancing Online Presence

  • Visibility: In today’s digital age, having a strong online presence is not optional but necessary. A website acts as your digital storefront, available to customers 24/7.
  • Perception: Customers tend to perceive businesses with a robust online presence as more reliable and established compared to those without.

3. Streamlining Operations

  • Efficiency: Automating the booking process online reduces the need for time-consuming manual entries and verbal confirmations, making your workflow more efficient.
  • Accessibility: Having all your services and travel package details in one place simplifies the information dissemination process, making it easier for customers to find what they’re looking for.

4. Showcasing Your Brand

  • Brand Image: A custom portal allows you to present your brand identity in a way that resonates with your target audience. Carefully crafted visuals, informative content, and a user-friendly interface all contribute to a strong brand image.
  • Content Control: You have the freedom to curate content that resonates with your target audience, from detailed travel guides to stunning visuals of destinations, helping you stand out in the crowded travel market.
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5. Addressing Customer Queries

  • Information Hub: Your travel portal can serve as a comprehensive resource for customers seeking information about destinations, packages, or any travel-related queries.h
  • Customer Support Integration: With options like live chat or a FAQ section, you can directly address customer concerns, enhancing the service experience.

Custom travel portal development vs. Generic travel portal development Solutions   

While a basic website might seem sufficient, a custom travel portal offers significant advantages.

  • Tailored Features: A generic website lacks the ability to cater to your specific business needs and offerings. A custom portal allows you to integrate travel portal features that directly address your target audience and the unique services you provide.
  • Branding & Customization: Project your brand identity effectively. Custom Travel Portal Development allows complete control over the design, layout, and functionalities, ensuring your brand message is conveyed consistently.
  • Scalability & Future Growth: As your business grows, your portal can adapt and evolve. Custom development ensures the platform can accommodate future needs and integrate with additional services you may offer.
  • Data & Analytics: Custom portals provide valuable data insights into user behavior and booking trends. This allows you to make data-driven decisions to optimize your offerings and marketing strategies.

Key Components and USPs of Custom Travel Portals

A custom travel portal is more than just a booking website it’s an integrated platform tailored to the unique needs of businesses, enhancing the efficiency and oversight of corporate travel.

  • Online Booking System: Enables employees to book flights, hotels, and other travel services directly.
  • Travel Policy Integration: Ensures all bookings comply with company travel policies.
  • Expense Tracking: Offers tools for monitoring and managing travel expenses.

Why Are Custom Travel Portals Important?

1. Access to Exclusive Deals and Negotiated Rates

Corporate travel portals provide access to negotiated rates, discounts, and corporate deals not typically available to individual travelers. This allows businesses to capitalize on bulk buying and preferred partnerships with hotels, airlines, and other service providers, resulting in significant cost savings.

2. Automation of Booking Processes

Traditional corporate travel booking can be time-consuming, involving manual communication with travel agencies or online platforms. Corporate travel portals automate the process, enabling employees to make bookings efficiently and in compliance with company travel policies, thereby reducing administrative overhead.

3. Enforcement of Travel Policies

Corporate travel portals can be configured to enforce company travel policies, ensuring adherence to guidelines related to booking, budget allocation, and preferred service providers. This helps maintain consistency, accountability, and alignment with company objectives across the organization.

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4. Customization Options

Many corporate travel portals offer customization options, allowing businesses to tailor the platform to their specific needs. This may include integrating preferred hotels and airlines or incorporating travel policy guidelines, enhancing user experience and satisfaction.

5. Data Security and Compliance

Corporate travel portals prioritize data security and compliance with industry regulations to safeguard sensitive information such as personal and financial data. This ensures protection against potential threats and maintains trust and credibility with employees and stakeholders.

6. Reporting and Analytics Tools

These portals often come equipped with reporting and analytics tools, providing businesses with insights into travel expenses, trends, and cost-saving opportunities.

This data-driven approach enables informed decision-making, better budget management, and optimization of travel expenditure.

7. Relationship Building with Travel Suppliers

Corporate travel portals foster strong relationships with travel suppliers, including hotels, airlines, and car rental companies. These partnerships can result in additional perks and benefits for the business, such as loyalty points, priority service, and exclusive offers.

Must-Have Features for a Successful Custom Travel Portal

Building a successful custom travel portal requires incorporating features that streamline the booking process and create a positive user experience. Here’s a detailed breakdown of the features mentioned, along with their functionalities and benefits.

features for custom travel portal

1. Seamless Search and Booking Flow

  • Intuitive User Interface (UI): The portal’s interface should be visually appealing, user-friendly, and easy to navigate. This ensures a smooth experience for users of all technical backgrounds.
  • Streamlined Navigation: Clear and logical menu structures and search filters allow users to find desired travel options efficiently.
  • Quick Search Functionalities: Search options like auto-complete suggestions, date pickers, and customizable filters refine searches quickly and deliver relevant results.
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2. Reward Points on Booking

  • Points System Integration: Implementing a points system incentivizes customers to book through your portal. Users earn points for each booking, which they can redeem for discounts, upgrades, or other perks on future travel arrangements.
  • Enhanced Customer Experience: Reward programs foster loyalty by encouraging repeat business. This leads to a more engaged customer base and higher customer retention rates.

3. Ease of Payment

  • Multiple Payment Options: The portal should accept a wide range of payment methods, including domestic and international credit cards, debit cards, and e-wallets (e.g., PayPal, Apple Pay). This caters to a global customer base and ensures a smooth payment process.
  • Secure Payment Gateway: Integrate a secure payment gateway to ensure all transactions are encrypted and protected against fraud. Customers can feel confident providing their financial information during the booking process.

4. Manage Booking 

  • Booking Management Features: The portal should allow customers to easily access and manage their existing bookings. This includes functionalities for viewing itineraries, modifying trip details (within policy limitations), and reviewing travel documents.
  • Clear Policies: Clearly communicate policies on baggage allowance, cancellation fees, and modification procedures. This transparency empowers users to make informed decisions about their travel arrangements.

5. Customer Support 

  • Live Chat Support: Offering a real-time chat support option enables customers to get immediate answers to their questions and resolve any issues swiftly.
  • 24/7 Customer Support: Providing 24/7 customer support ensures that customers can access assistance regardless of time zone differences. This enhances customer satisfaction by demonstrating a commitment to resolving concerns promptly.

6. Web Check-In and Flight Status Management 

  • Web Check-In Integration: Integrating web check-in functionality allows customers to check in for their flights directly through the travel portal. This eliminates the need to queue at airport check-in counters, saving time and reducing travel stress.
  • Flight Status Management: Enable customers to view real-time flight status updates within the portal. This feature keeps them informed about any potential delays or changes and allows for better travel planning.

7. Reminder Email for Web Check-in

  • Timely Notifications: Sending out reminders for web check-ins helps ensure that travelers don’t miss their check-in windows.
  • Enhanced Travel Experience: This feature aids in keeping travelers organized and stress-free.

8. Clear Communication via Email 

  • Booking and Policy Information: Sending detailed emails about booking confirmations, baggage policies, and cancellation/modification rules keeps travelers well-informed.
  • Policy Updates: Communicate updates to baggage allowance, cancellation policies, and other travel policies via email. Transparent communication keeps customers informed and ensures they understand their travel arrangements fully.

9. Hold Booking and Select Fare Types

  • Price Lock Feature: Allowing customers to hold a booking for a certain period by paying a minimum amount offers flexibility and assurance.
  • Fare Choice: Giving customers the option to select from various fare types enables them to tailor their travel according to their preferences and budget.

Add-On Features for a Custom White Label Travel Portal

1. Extra Baggage Purchase Option

Custom travel portals must allow customers to conveniently add extra baggage allowances during their booking process. This feature offers several advantages:

  • Customization: Platforms like Travcoding let travel businesses customize the extra baggage option to fit their needs and customer preferences.
  • Integration: Seamless integration with existing booking features (like those offered by Adivaha) ensures a smooth process for adding baggage at the time of reservation.
  • Enhanced User Experience: Customers can streamline their travel preparations by managing baggage allowance directly during booking, eliminating the need for separate arrangements.

2. Seat and Meal Selection

Beyond baggage, portals can let customers choose seats and meals, personalizing their journey. Let’s see how custom travel portals handle seat and meal selection

  • Seat Selection: Travel portals collaborate with airlines to provide customers with real-time seat maps. Customers choose their desired seats (window, aisle) and confirm them during booking.
  • Meal Selection: Similarly, portals partner with airlines to offer pre-selection of meals. Customers browse available options, choose their preferred type (vegetarian, etc.), and pre-order meals during booking.
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3. Insurance

Travelers can purchase insurance plans to protect themselves against unforeseen circumstances. Custom Travel Portal Development typically offer a range of insurance options to cater to diverse needs:

  • Custom-Made Travel Insurance: This plan covers unforeseen flight-related emergencies, as seen in Adivaha’s B2C white label solutions documentation.
  • Participant Protection Plans: Companies like Travmark offer white label participant protection programs tailored for various travel operators.

4. Loyalty Programs

Reward frequent travelers and encourage customer retention with discounts, upgrades, and exclusive offers. They can play a key role in boosting customer engagement and retention. Here’s how they function.

  • Points Accumulation: Customers earn points for bookings and transactions, redeemable for future discounts, upgrades, or other perks.
  • Tiered Membership: Loyalty programs have multiple tiers offering increasing benefits like priority booking and access to exclusive deals as customers move up the tiers.
  • Personalized Offers: Travel portals can analyze customer behaviour and preferences to deliver personalized promotions and discounts, enhancing satisfaction.
  • Referral Bonuses: Customers can earn additional rewards for referring friends or family, attracting new customers.
  • Partner Benefits: Collaboration with partners like airlines or hotels can expand available rewards and deals for travellers.

5. Custom Margin Management

Custom margin management allows travel agencies to set and adjust profit margins on various travel services (flights, accommodations, activities) based on their business strategies and market conditions. This feature empowers agencies to:

  • Customize Pricing: Agencies can customize markup or discounts on travel products to optimize revenue and competitiveness.
  • Control Over Pricing: Agencies have full control over pricing, ensuring competitive offerings while maintaining healthy profit margins.
  • Adapt to Market Trends: Agencies can adjust margins based on factors like seasonality, booking volume, and promotions to stay agile in a fast-paced industry.
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Understanding the Shift: Today’s Traveler and Evolving Preferences

Shifting Priorities

  • Then vs. Now: Previously, travel was often reserved for post-retirement plans, with a focus on visiting historical and religious sites. Today, travel is an integral lifestyle element for millennials and Gen Z, emphasizing experiences over destinations.
  • Experiences over Souvenirs: The focus has moved from collecting traditional souvenirs to prioritizing unique and immersive experiences. This could involve anything from culinary adventures and off-the-beaten-path explorations to cultural immersions and volunteering opportunities.
  • Rise of Solo Travel: The stigma surrounding solo travel has significantly diminished. Nearly 80% of millennials are now open to exploring the world independently, seeking personal growth and self-discovery.

Evolving Preferences

  • Spontaneous Travel: Impulse trips are on the rise, with a 150% increase in the past few years. This highlights the desire for flexibility and the ability to book last-minute getaways with ease.
  • Customization & Personalization: Travelers today crave tailor-made experiences that cater to their individual interests and preferences. This can range from personalized itineraries to curated activity suggestions.
  • Technology Reliance: Modern travelers are digital natives, heavily reliant on technology to research, plan, and book their trips. They expect user-friendly websites with seamless functionalities like advanced search filters and mobile-friendliness.

Implications for Travel Businesses

1. Catering to New Consumer Demands

  • Personalization: Your travel portal must offer personalized suggestions and flexible booking options to cater to the spontaneous and diverse needs of today’s travelers.
  • Unique Offerings: Highlight exclusive experiences, off-the-beaten-path destinations, and local adventures that appeal to those seeking unique travel experiences.

2. Enhancing Digital Presence

  • Ease of Use: Ensure your website is user-friendly, with intuitive navigation and a seamless booking process to cater to the tech-savvy generation.
  • Rich Content: Incorporate engaging content that resonates with the adventurous spirit of modern travelers, including travel blogs, guides, and virtual tours.

3. Building Trust and Credibility

  • Customer Reviews: Feature genuine reviews and testimonials to build trust.
  • Transparency: Be clear about pricing and policies to foster transparency and confidence in your services.

4. Emphasizing on Solo and Customized Travel

  • Solo Travel Features: Include safety tips, solo travel packages, and community forums to support solo travelers.
  • Customization Tools: Offer dynamic package customization options allowing travelers to tailor their trips according to their preferences.

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