Orbitz takes social networking to work in and around airports
09/09/2007|8:04:00 PM|Eyefortravel
Orbitz Worldwide, Inc. has introduced a new concept in OrbitzTLC Traveler Update, a user-generated service enabling travelers to share real-time information regarding what’s happening in and around the US-based top airports. (9/5/2007)

The offering combines up-to-the-minute information from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), OrbitzTLC air traffic alerts and data from the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) with the contributions and reports of everyday travelers to create a powerful new information resource.

Content includes real-time data and information on security line wait times, traffic delays, parking updates, taxi lines, flight delays, weather information and more.

“Orbitz Worldwide is breaking new ground by harnessing the power of Web 2.0 technology, and bringing travelers everywhere real-time updates in a truly distinctive way,” said Steve Barnhart, CEO and President, Orbitz Worldwide.

“OrbitzTLC Traveler Update sprang from our customer insight that people value information from others in the same situation and our business insight that, at any point in time, Orbitz has thousands of customers moving through major airports and travel destinations,” said Randy Wagner, Chief Marketing Officer, Orbitz Worldwide. “We’re inviting everyone to both reach out and reach in to join The Orbitz community of travelers for a rich source of real-time updates to make their travel experience the best it can be.”

The free updates can be accessed via the Internet or mobile device, including mobile phones and PDAs. OrbitzTLC Traveler Update can be accessed online at
www.updates.orbitz.com) or via mobile phone/PDA at www.mobile.orbitz.com.

In addition, those who register with Orbitz will have the ability to rate updates and tips submitted by fellow travelers based upon helpfulness and accuracy. Those with the top user ratings will be ranked on the Traveler Update site, helping to create an online community of trusted travel sources.

Orbitz plans to establish an incentive programme for the most helpful contributors. Anonymous contributors can post to the site but can not vote on the helpfulness of others or be rated themselves.

After travelers select their chosen airport from a list of 40+ major airports in the United States, OrbitzTLC users can get instant access to key travel information including:

Real Time Traveler Update (postings of real-time travel conditions and insider tips provided by actual travelers), Traffic (real-time traffic information, including traffic times, delays, accident reports and construction updates), Airport/Flight Status (shows flight status and any airport delays based on FAA data), Security Wait Time (provides 30-day average security line wait times from the TSA, as well as updates on current wait times from fellow travelers at a chosen departing airport), Weather (provided by weather.com), Parking, Wi-Fi (options available at the airport) and other travel tips from fellow travelers, such as favorite restaurants, quiet work spaces and any other insider advice.