TripAdvisor announced today the launch of its innovative Business Travel Center, a full-service business trip planning resource covering more than 20,000 hotels in more than 750 cities worldwide. This dedicated home on TripAdvisor.com is a one-stop shop for business trip planning that features a Business Popularity Index that ranks hotels specifically for business travelers, and interactive maps that identify meeting locations and then finds nearby restaurants, attractions, transportation, and business services.
The US corporate travel market was estimated to be a US$101 billion market in 2008 according to PhoCusWright, and 52 percent of respondents to a 2008 TripAdvisor survey said they travel for business at least 1-2 times a year. TripAdvisor is addressing this market demand with the Business Travel Center.
The New Business Popularity Index
For the first time on any travel site, business travelers can now specifically sort reviews written by business travelers about their business trip stays at hotels and see rankings that display hotels that best cater to business travelers. Using similar technology as TripAdvisor’s Hotel Popularity Index, the Business Popularity Index ranks hotels worldwide based on the popularity of a given hotel for business travel, as measured by both the quantity and quality of content written about the hotel on TripAdvisor and across the web. Now, instead of having to read through dozens of reviews to find content written by and for business travelers like them, this new index zeroes in on the reviews business travelers really care about.
Dynamic Interactive Maps
The TripAdvisor Business Travel Center’s robust and interactive maps first allow travelers to “map an address” and add their meeting destination. The map tool then automatically shows all nearby hotels, and travelers can then quickly reveal nearby restaurants and attractions in the area. A huge additional benefit for business travelers, the map also shows nearby business services, including coffee shops, copy and shipping services, and convention centers, as well as transportation options, such as rail stations and airports.
New Filtering Functionality Surfaces Reviews for Specific Traveler Types
Now travelers can go to a hotel page, pick their trip type and see reviews written by people who have taken the same type of trip they are planning. Additionally, there is a new ratings filter on TripAdvisor that allows travelers to sort and only read reviews with a particular quality rating, from excellent to poor.
“We’re very excited to bring the full weight and wisdom of the TripAdvisor community to travelers planning their business trips,” said Robin Ingle, senior vice president of sales at TripAdvisor. “Now people who know and trust us for their leisure travel have a powerful and unique tool at their disposal, making their time away from home as valuable and productive as possible.”
Additional Business Center Features
New Business Travel Filters: As with typical TripAdvisor destination pages, you can sort hotels by hotel brand, price, hotel star class, neighborhood, and amenity type. You can also check availability for your dates of travel.
New Three-Day Weather Forecast: Highlights the business destination’s three-day forecast helping business travelers to pack and plan accordingly.
Business Traveler Info About the City: Wiki pages allow business travelers to help other business travelers get specific information about relevant destination topics such as transportation, night life, and local events.
Business Travel Forum: Business travelers can also share detailed travel information, tips, and up-to-the-minute news on specific business travel destinations or hotels in TripAdvisor’s business travel forum.
“We’re excited to be partnering with the world’s largest travel community in launching this innovative Business Travel Center,” said Brian Povinelli, vice president of brand management for Sheraton Hotels and Resorts. “We think this dynamic resource will dovetail nicely with Sheraton’s long-standing commitment to the business traveler.”