TORONTO — As if the traditional retail travel industry doesn’t have enough competition. Now comes word that Facebook could be the next online giant to enter the travel field.
The social media site already allows hotels and OTAs to target Facebook users talking about vacation plans with trip-related ads, using the Messenger application. Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi says it’s just a matter of time before Facebook targets travel-related revenue more aggressively. “We do think that travel is such a significant portion of e-commerce that Facebook will have a travel-specific product,” he said in a Skift interview earlier this month. There was no comment from Facebook.
Already Facebook users can store their credit card details, for any purchases they’d like to make through ads they see on the site.
Just about everyone wants to take a run at the travel industry, one of the most booked products on the Internet. Earlier this year Google introduced its Destinations on Google app. Google has denied any OTA aspirations. And in April 2015 Amazon entered the field with Amazon Destinations, a hotel booking tool. Amazon made the decision to pull the plug six months later, saying it had “learned a lot.”