Comparison of online travel portals in India

Earlier, I had compared the players in the Indian online DVD rental market. This time around, I decided to do a head-to-head comparison of the Indian online travel portals.

Why online travel portals ?

The Indian online travel market is H-O-T !! Over the last year, the Indian online travel portal market has seen a lot of action – New players have emerged, VC investments have been made, aggressive online marketing campaigns and now even several international players are considering entering into the market – an all out race to get the biggest market share. Oh, and did I mention that the Indian online travel segment is the fastest growing e-commerce sector ?
I have tried to be as accurate as possible based on my research from publicly available sources. However, if you find any discrepancy, please feel free to let me know and I shall correct it accordingly.

The comparison does not include Rediff FareSearch and IndiaTimes Travel for the following reasons:

1) It is difficult to estimate the traffic and market share for these two sites. Alexa doesnt display the traffic details for the travel sub portal for IndiaTimes. The only detail Alexa provides is that 2% of all visitors to IndiaTimes website visited their travel sub portal. Details for Rediff FareSearch dont even show up in the traffic details for Rediff.com.

2) Rediff FareSearch is more of a travel deal aggregator as opposed to a travel booking portal. What I mean is that they do not provide the ability to book flights on their site. Instead, they redirect you to the corresponding airline’s booking engine to complete the transaction.

So which sites are included in the head to head comparison ?

I have decided to include the five biggest players (Note:IndiaTimes travel may be bigger than some of these but I dont include them based on explanation above) in the online Indian travel segment based on their Alexa traffic details:

MakeMyTrip, Yatra, ClearTrip, TravelGuru, TravelMartIndia

travel-graph.png

Without further ado, here’s the comparison matrix. Some additional observations follow

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34 comments

  1. There is one more such site called flightraja.com. It also has a simple interface and shows all details in clear format. Most importantly, it shows results from Air Deccan and Go Air also which no other sites show. I booked 4 return tickets from Mumbai to Delhi. Flightraja showed total cost as 12.5K while all other sites showed 19K.

  2. try another very intuitive site called http://www.ticketvala.com great idea of selling bus tickets online.

  3. @vishal – seems like I overlooked flightraja. They do have a good UI. In terms of traffic, they’re pretty much at par with tmartIndia. I played around with flightraja. Seems to be pretty good in terms of flight results. I’ll try to incorporate it as part of the comparison.

    @vicky – are people using the service online bus ticket service ? If so, how popular is it ?

  4. Quite an interesting read. Would be interesting to know how these portals compare when it comes to booking hotels.

  5. I am Quite fond of this Travel Portal as I have several GooD options available in hand while booking the Air Tickets to any parts of INDIA.

  6. @neha

    Didnt get around to covering hotels

  7. Hi,

    How does the comparision of webportal help me while booking tickets? Its ok when airlines are compared in portal not otherwise. Am I right?

    Amal.

  8. Hi guys

    Thank you for sharing useful information.Im a frequent traveler with in India and sometimes abroad.I always book my holidays with in India with http://www.hotelhihotel.com exclusivly deals with hotels around India and also specailised in International Airtickets ..

  9. Just comparing different website based on traffic (alexa) may not really make sense !

    You might want to see how much of all airline is cover, revenue may be ? which aggregator is used by what audience ? What is the different amongst them ? etc ?

    Let me know if i can be helpfull in doing a little bit of it.

  10. I think the UI of http://www.Cleartrip.com rocks simple & Sober

    Cheers!!
    Prashant P

  11. Anyone tried iXiGO ? My colleague told me about this site two weeks back – it’s http://www.iXiGO.com – now my favourite – simple, easy to use, and I have always found better fares and more options than on Yatra, makemytrip or cleartrip.

  12. I find http://www.ezeego1.co.in a comprehensive travel booking hub.

  13. India travel Enthusiast

    Check http://www.idiscoverindia.com for info on INDIA TRAVEL.

  14. Hi,
    I am a journalist with a travel Magzine and basically covering travel portals these days recently came across Zoomtra.com it is quite a user freindly website. And incase readers of the website come across any new website please do inform me at chawla_kavya@yahoo.co.in.It will increase my avenues for coverage.

  15. Kavya – Quit kidding. Journalists dont promote travel sites :-) and usually they dont like spam either.

  16. viajustgo.com, formerly, flightraja.com

    there is one fundamental difference in our approach. We are focussed on empowering 10,000+ travel agents in the country by providing them seamless connectivity on all domestic airlines for them to issue tickets to their customers and also earn commission on the same.

    we have more than 4000 agents in 340 cities registered with us who issue tickets to their customers.

    we are steadily growing on our B2C share and are confident will have significant market share without obscene adspend which has been the norm in india.

    niranjan gupta
    COO
    via

  17. For a more comprehensive analysis of travel sites in India, see:

    http://trak.in/Tags/Business/2007/08/26/indian-travel-airfare-ticket-search-startup/

  18. You may want to have a look as well at Sprice.co.in. Sprice is an international travel search engine, with a specific site for India, searching domestic -and- international airfares and hotels.

  19. India Travel Agents Hub created with the association of well known travel service provider of India. We have few selected travel agency with their expertise in particular tour package.

  20. your website is very good.

  21. Was wondering if the Indian online travel sites can benefit from Amazon.com’s online book selling model where they show listings from other book-sellers (mom&pop, individuals, other book stores). Our travel sites could similarly aggregate the offerings of local travel agents. So when you search for a flight and price, offers from local travel agents will also be listed allowing the users the choice of picking up the tix themselves.

    There is great advantage to the first-mover in this space (local travel agents will be quick to jump on to get online exposure) and the travel site can earn a buck just for making the connection.

    Food for thought – hope some travel site is reading this ;)

    -Unmesh.
    Founder, SadakMap.com
    SpotMeUrl: http://www.sadakmap.com/spotme/unmesh

  22. Hi Guys,

    thanks for such informations i get lots information about the Online Travel agency without paying a single penny hahaha.

    I am just kidding usually i use makemytrip.com for my flight and hotel bookings. I always get a comfort and good price. Customer service is too good they will be in touch with you from the day you made your reservation till you arrive back to ur place. they always ready to helpout their passenger any time. they having a 24*7 customer care with a tollfree number.

    I just want to say if any body want to tell me abt makemytrip any bad or good exp i m ready to listen but as per my reccomandations you guys should go & try out makemytrip once

  23. This is really very informative. But maybe you guys not noticed there is another good India Tour Operator emerging in this competition. If you want to know more then visit http://www.indianholiday.com and let me know your view….:)

  24. As far as informations are provided by this blog ragarding the top competitive travel agency and rates between the them. but if your are thinking about luxury train journey in india palace on wheels then no need to check rates of other travel agent just click on http://www.aboutpalaceonwheels.com

  25. Truly Said. Online Travel market today is getting very competitive.
    Well! Further I would only say that we have to be very analytic and clever enough while choosing for a good online tour operator.

  26. well – i cant afford to travel by air these days so I prefer to use train. after being sick of the slow system that irctc uses i now use rediff train service to find stuff on trains…at least it faster than all the govt sites
    http://indian-railways.rediff.com/index.php

  27. Krishna Ramesh

    Try http://www.travel.dwaar.com for rail. All details in a single search. No crazy select class or check availability business. Sort by time , duration , fare or filter by departure.

    Very useful

  28. Would be interesting to see how the key international OTA players compare – http://www.travelocity.co.in and expedia.in

  29. Guys try booking tickets ( railway, bus, Movie etc)..at Suvidhaa outlets across india…
    Suvidhaa outlet which are manned & spread across the country enable consumer to Book Tour Packages / Hotel Booking, purchase Railway / Airline / Bus and Cinema tickets – online / offline, besides enabling them to pay electricity and other utility bills online / offline .
    For more info log on to – http://www.mysuvidhaa.com

  30. Yes, interesting post.

    And I am guilty of launching another one in this already competetive market.

    But we need some help with the tagline for GreenGambol.
    http://www.greengambol.com/tag.php

    Any suggestions?

  31. Try using http://www.GhumiChale.com India’s First Hotels Comparison Engine…it searches over 800,000 Hotel Deals globally

  32. Hi All,

    It is interesting to see the movement in Indian Travel industry. We are recruiting for 2 travel start-up among top 5.

    rgds,
    Pankaj Mittal

  33. Dear All,

    Thomas Cook (I) Ltd has launched its own web portal. (www.thomascook.in)
    From this site you can not only book flight tickets but they can also book Indian rail tickets which no other site except IRCTC allows. Also, you can apply for Travel Insurance and Visa and Holiday packages.

    In other words, this site has everything you would require for your travel (domestic as well as abroad) under one roof.

    Hope you will find it useful.