In the last few days, Ctrip ported the travel recommendation service it acquired to a new domain, www.trip.skyscanner.com, and on Sunday it turned Trip.com into an English-language version of Ctrip’s online travel agency content. The homepage format is different in some ways from the English-language version of its long-standing Ctrip.com website.
As of launch day, Trip.com’s homepage is scrubbed of any reference to being Chinese-owned, although the the Trip.com About Us page says Trip.com is part of the Ctrip Group. The signature Ctrip logo is missing from the site. A promotional box emphasizes trips to Chinese cities, but the search engine offers travel to 5,000 cities in 200 countries.
Industry insiders will be watching whether Ctrip eventually uses the domain as an “open platform” that mixes Skyscanner’s metasearch model with traditional online travel agency listings. There have been signs that a mixed model, or “open platform,” is what company executives think will work best. Already in flight results on Trip.com, there are a mix of deals from wholesalers and suppliers when listing airfares, though not content from Skyscanner yet.
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