Flight Centre Travel Group, the parent company of Liberty Travel, GOGO Worldwide Vacations, and a number of other travel brands, has announced a new partnership with a Silicon Valley-based startup accelerator aimed at developing promising new travel technologies.
“Together we hope to discover, support and scale promising travel technology startups,” said Graham “Skroo” Turner, CEO of Flight Centre Travel Group, of the new partnership with Plug and Play in a written release. “We are engaging across verticals such as air, hotels, cruise, tours and product distribution. We are also interested in promising in-destination services and technologies.”
“We serve millions of customers and are always looking for innovative ways to improve the user experience, from search and booking all the way through the travel experience,” said Atle Skalleberg, chief digital officer of Flight Centre Travel Group.
The move is the latest initiative from travel companies looking to beef up their technology offerings for travel agents and consumers. Virtuoso launched its Incubator program in 2015, which allows travel technology startups to test new solutions with Virtuoso member agencies before receiving feedback and, potentially, becoming a preferred partner. That program is now seeking applications for 2018.
At their 2017 National Conference, World Travel Holdings’ CruiseOne, Cruises Inc. and Dream Vacations brands launched a new “Vacation Superhero” referral service that allows agents to invite clients to post testimonials on social media. Also this week, tour operator Travel Impressions partnered with Softrip Travel Solutions in a move aimed at improving Travel Impressions’ handling of agents’ group business.