South Africa's largest low-cost airline and operator of the South African arm of British Airways, Comair Travel (JSE: COM), has set its sights on growing its dynamic package offering for domestic travellers. The company has partnered with SiteMinder, the global hotel industry's leading cloud platform, to provide a direct connection for SiteMinder's 30,000 hotel customers and expand package options to complement the more than one million flight, car rental and accommodation bookings made through Comair's online platforms each year.
Comair Travel's hotel development and distribution manager, Russell Hine, says the move offers the dual benefits of greater online visibility for local hotels and a one-stop solution for consumers who otherwise suffer from browsing fatigue.
"For hotels, Comair's partnership with SiteMinder provides an opportunity to be seen on three highly-successful marketing channels – Kulula.com, Vitality Hotel Collection and mtbeds – and gain diverse reach in the South African market. And, of course, for consumers it means more accommodation options to select from as part of a complete travel package," says Mr Hine.
"Consumers typically book their flights first, but we know through our clients that they would want to book their accommodation and car rental at the same time, if given the option. They are tired of looking at multiple booking sites and never truly knowing whether they got the best price and package. By us offering a broader suite of accommodation options to complement the lowest flights in the country, consumers can be confident they are receiving the best package."
The four-star Bantry Bay Suite Hotel in Cape Town is the first to list its property on Comair Travel's distribution channels through SiteMinder. Says the hotel's revenue manager, Jaco Jacobs, "We use SiteMinder for all our distribution needs, so we are very thrilled to have the Comair Travel connection added to our product offering. Through their partnership, we now have the ability to distribute contracted rates and, in addition, offer best available rates. No more excel close out sheets and manual updates."
Comair Travel has offered flights within South Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa and the Indian Ocean Islands for more than 70 years. The company also recently became the first South African airline carrier to offer dynamic packages to Mauritius.
Lisa Horne, General Manager – South Africa at SiteMinder, says, "SiteMinder is proud to offer such an important connection as Comair Travel to South Africa's hotels, and support the country's travel sector in this way."