Building Economic Sustainability through Tourism Project

USAID BEST supports creation of online travel agency to facilitate bookings in Jordan

29 Jun 2016

AMMAN (June 29, 2016) - The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) awarded a grant to TravoTech, a Jordanian company specializing in online travel solutions, to support the creation of an online platform that enables inbound tour operators to reach new international travel markets. The online booking platform will automate the process of customizing and booking tours and services for both travelers and international tour operators.

With 57% of all travel reservations made online, the traditional in-person business model is fading out as travelers for both business and leisure are increasingly turning to the internet to research and book travel directly, bypassing local agents even though they might be able to provide a customizable itinerary and potentially better value for money. Realizing the global trends and understanding that local tour operators are better in providing travelers with enhanced experiences, TravoTech, with support from USAID Building Economic Sustainability Through Tourism (BEST) Project and Oasis 500, is creating a fully customizable online platform that enables Jordanian companies to sell their packages through fully automated Business to Business and Business to Consumer interfaces.

Russell Bauer, Director of USAID's Economic Development and Energy Office, stated that, "The benefits of this service will be felt across the tourism sector, from participating travel agencies and service providers, all the way to local communities in tourism destinations."

TravoTech CEO Omar Sabella said, "Jordanian inbound tour operators have the option of subscribing and selling their services through TravoTech's booking platform; to date ten local travel agencies have expressed interest in the subscribing to the service. We plan to launch the platform by early 2017."

The platform is expected to increase the number of visitors in Jordan by diversifying Jordan's sales and distribution channels, and increasing tourist spending, generating hundreds of thousands of dinars worth of bookings.