It’s been exactly one year since Ctrip purchased Trip.com – a strategic move by the Chinese online travel powerhouse to bring its services into local Asia Pacific markets.
Ctrip’s version of Trip.com is a very different proposition to the site that hit the scenes and raised USD 39 million in funding.
Ctrip has also been investing in localization efforts in Trip.com markets, Tseng says, because each region needs to present unique value propositions to its local user base.
In Singapore, for example, where a lot of travel is outbound, Trip.com has been promoting “staycations” to residents to help local hotel chains grow bookings.
In Japan, meanwhile, Trip.com launched a co-branded credit card with the bank Sumitomo that allows users to log loyalty points with purchases.
There has also been a concerted effort to assist local users in making payments and contacting customer service. He estimates there are as many as 14,000 call center people who pick up the phone within 20 seconds available 24/7, and a call center recently opened in Korea in response to the volume of calls coming from the area.
Building a “super app”
For Chinese Ctrip users, there’s a 20 to 30% natural attachment rate of booking other travel products in the same itinerary, which he says presents a lot of opportunity for Trip.com to leverage.
To that end, Trip.com added Ctrip’s car rental service in March and its tours and activities inventory in August, giving travelers more booking options beyond flights and hotels.
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