“the partnership, which follows recent partnerships with Booking.com, Expedia and Agoda, bolsters Travala.com’s product suite and cements the platform as one of the world’s largest online travel agencies (OTAs).”
Startup SuccessFounded in 2017, with a mission to “decentralize travel through global accessibility, censorship-resistant transactions, and community ownership,” Travala.com has grown from humble origins into one of the world’s leading travel booking platforms. Backed by industry giant Binance, the platform lets travelers book hotels, flights, and now tours and activities with more than 30 different cryptocurrencies – including Bitcoin, Ethereum, and AVA, Travala.com’s native cryptocurrency. In practice, this news means that Travala’s users will now be able to book any of Tripadvisor’s extensive Viator listings via the platform. Commenting on the partnership, Travala CEO Juan Otero remarked,
“we’re thrilled to partner with another travel giant to offer our users an extensive choice of tours and activities.”Per the release, tours and activities are estimated to be worth over $150 billion, or 10% of the global travel market. This makes them the third-largest segment in the travel industry after flights and accommodation.
Weathering the StormThe global tourism industry, which accounted for 10% of global GDP in 2019, has taken a massive hit due to the Coronavirus. It’s been predicted that 120 million jobs are at risk, with economic damage likely to exceed over $1 trillion. But this hasn’t stopped Travala from forging ahead. In September, the company was reportedly courting travelers in China, one of the few regions in this pandemic-restricted world where travel is rebounding to pre-crisis levels. The partnership announcement also concluded with an optimistic note,
“as a crypto-native startup, Travala.com is in a strong position to provide value add in the OTA market, which is expected to generate revenue in excess of $1 trillion by 2023.”
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