Orbitz Worldwide's ebookers brand improves the customer experience with new
technology, more inventory and more service
LONDON and CHICAGO, Aug. 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- ebookers, a leading
full service online travel company in Europe, has re-launched its U.K. website
(http://www.ebookers.co.uk) offering customers greater functionality and a
better user experience.
ebookers (http://www.ebookers.com) is a brand of Orbitz Worldwide, Inc.
(NYSE: OWW) that operates in 13 countries across Europe and Scandinavia,
including the brand Mr. Jet (http://www.mrjet.se) in Denmark and Sweden.
The new website aims to make booking decisions easier through simpler
navigation and more product choice. As an example, ebookers has tripled the
number of hotels available within its inventory. Authentic hotel user reviews
from thousands of properties and additional information about traveller
destinations, including more hotel photos and maps also have been added.
Built on a new global technology platform, ebookers will offer customers
greater speed in searching and booking.
"This is an important moment in the evolution of the ebookers brand, as we
work to make it the leading travel choice for our customers in Europe," said
Steve Barnhart, President and CEO of Orbitz Worldwide, Inc. "This new,
innovative ebookers website will provide customers with more air and hotel
choices and a better, faster online experience."
Major Technology Accomplishment for Orbitz Worldwide
The ebookers site in the United Kingdom is the first Orbitz Worldwide
brand to be migrated over to the company's new global technology platform.
The platform is one of several key strategic initiatives for Orbitz
Worldwide's growth in international markets. The new technology is built to
operate multiple consumer brands more efficiently, including multi-language
and multi-currency capabilities. The platform is also designed to enable the
more rapid deployment of customer-centric technologies and services across all
of Orbitz Worldwide's international brands, including the ability to offer
suppliers a global customer base.
"This new technology will help us enhance the global travel experience and
grow in international markets to the benefit of ebookers' customers," added
Additional ebookers.com functionality now includes:
-- Improved site navigation to help make booking decisions easier. For
example, customers can now sort by hotel name and address, price and
proximity to a landmark.
-- Wider range of travel products, including over three times the number
of hotels available.
-- A world class dynamic packaging tool that enables customised packaged
-- More destinations for customers who book customised and packaged
flight & hotel holidays
-- Destinations enabling customers to book all travel elements
together (e.g., flight & hotel & car) adding another layer of
-- Locales with guaranteed savings when you book customised holiday
-- Improved features and promotional pages guiding customers to great
offers and deals, helping them find the trip they want for less!
-- Thousands of authentic hotel reviews, from other Orbitz Worldwide
customers who have actually stayed at the property, supporting
ebookers customers researching hotel options.
-- Smart bookers' section where customers can access traveller reviews,
insider tips and trade secrets from ebookers expert staff, customers
and journalists providing impartial advice on popular destinations.
-- "My Trips" and "My Accounts" sections that allow customers to view
current and previous trips, save their payment information, delivery
and travel preferences, including the ability to send itinerary alerts
to up to 4 contacts, friends, family members or business associates.
-- Multi-city flight search enabling customers to book more complex
flight itineraries, including up to 4 flights segments, which can
arrive and depart from different airports. For example, ebookers
customers can now book a flight that departs from London and flies
into Amsterdam and schedule a return flight, departing from Paris back
to London on the same itinerary.
-- An improved ebookers customer service experience through new caller
recognition technology. Customers who call ebookers' call centres
more than once will not have to repeat their trip information as the
system will recognise them through details from previous bookings or
their member profile, and populate their pertinent information on the
"41% of Europeans are currently researching and buying travel online(1).
We believe these leisure travellers are focused on efficient, value-orientated
websites, which offer a wide range of choice," said Alan Josephs, Managing
Director for ebookers. "ebookers listened to what our customers wanted and we
delivered a new website that meets the needs and expectations of today's savvy
traveller. Customers rated price and ease-of-use high on their wish lists.
To meet these demands, ebookers invested in a more modern and innovative
website that has the functionality to increasingly provide more relevant
content about destinations, greater travel choice through more hotel and
flight inventory, improved backend technology and destination advice."
New Brand Campaign
To re-introduce the new ebookers website to its European customers, the
company is planning to re-launch its brand through a comprehensive marketing
campaign. The new brand campaign will help explain the benefits of booking
with ebookers.com, including a new ebookers logo that has already been
launched on site. Over the next year, ebookers expects to unveil more product
features that will support the new customer-centric positioning, coupled with
a large integrated brand communications campaign expected to be launched in
early Autumn 2007.
Ebookers currently operates in 13 different European and Scandinavian
countries: Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Spain, France, Finland,
Ireland, The Netherlands, Norway, UK, and operates the brand Mr. Jet in
Denmark and Sweden. The company is expecting to move all ebookers websites on
to the new global platform throughout 2007 and 2008.
(1) Forrester Research
ebookers.com, one of Europe's largest online travel agents, prides itself
on making booking decisions easier and providing honest and impartial advice
to travellers. It has origins going back 20 years and close relationships
with leading travel suppliers of hotels and airlines. It offers a wide
selection of choice from 80,000 suppliers around the globe, plus a number of
car rental companies throughout Europe. ebookers.com sells a full range of
travel products online and over the telephone through 24/7 call centres and
through some retail outlets.
ebookers.com is a brand of Orbitz Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: OWW).
About Orbitz Worldwide
Orbitz Worldwide (NYSE: OWW) is a leading global online travel company
that uses innovative technology to enable leisure and business travelers to
research, plan and book a broad range of travel products. Orbitz Worldwide
owns and operates a portfolio of consumer brands that includes Orbitz
(http://www.orbitz.com), CheapTickets (http://www.cheaptickets.com), ebookers
(http://www.ebookers.com), HotelClub (http://www.hotelclub.com), RatesToGo
(http://www.ratestogo.com), the Away Network (http://www.away.com) and
corporate travel brands Orbitz for Business and Travelport for Business
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks,
uncertainties and other factors that may cause Orbitz Worldwide, Inc.'s
("Company") actual results, performance or achievements to be materially
different than the results, performance or achievements express or implied by
the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements can generally be
identified by phrases such as "believes," "expects," "potential," "continues,"
"may," "will," "should," "seeks," "predicts," "anticipates," "intends,"
"projects," "estimates," "plans," "could," "designed," "should be" and other
similar expressions that denote expectations of future or conditional events
rather than statements of fact.
The risks, uncertainties and other factors that could cause future results
to differ from those expressed by the forward-looking statements included in
this press release include, but are not limited to, competition in the travel
industry; factors affecting the level of travel activity, particularly air
travel volume; maintenance and protection of the Company's information
technology and intellectual property; the outcome of pending litigation; the
Company's significant indebtedness; future acquisition opportunities and the
Company's ability to successfully integrate acquired businesses and realize
their anticipated benefits; risks associated with doing business in multiple
currencies; trends in the travel industry; and general economic and business
conditions. More information regarding these and other risks, uncertainties
and factors is contained in the Company's filings with the Securities and
Exchange Commission (SEC) that are available on either the SEC's website at
http://www.sec.gov or the Investor Relations section of the Company's website
at http://www.orbitz-ir.com. In light of these risks, uncertainties and
factors, the forward-looking events discussed in this press release may not
occur. You are cautioned not to unduly rely on these forward-looking
statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release. Unless
required by law, the Company undertakes no obligation to update the forward-
looking statements included in this press release or to report the occurrence
of unanticipated events.
Orbitz Worldwide, Inc.
Cathryn Brannan, Anna Terrell, or Alexandra Marsh, all of Pleon
UK, +44 0207 479 5656, firstname.lastname@example.org, for ebookers; or Brian Hoyt of
Orbitz Worldwide, Inc., +1-312-894-6890, email@example.com