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Airline web sites closing gap on online travel agencies - report.

TELECOMWORLDWIRE-6 April 2001-Airline web sites closing gap on online travel agencies - report (C)1994-2001 M2 COMMUNICATIONS LTD

Jupiter Media Metrix, a market intelligence company, has reported figures comparing the use of airline web sites and travel agency web sites.

The company's ratings from February 2000 and 2001 have revealed that unique visitors to all travel sites increased by 23.5%, from 24.2m to 30.1m. Unique visitors to airline web sites increased by 26.1%, from 8.2m to 10.4m during the same period. Meanwhile, visitors to online travel agencies increased by just 7%, from 14.4m to 15.4m.

Jupiter Media Metrix says its results show that airline web sites are growing faster than travel sites overall, and are starting to narrow the lead of online travel agencies. A spokesperson for the company stated that in order to maintain their lead, online travel agencies must 'prioritise strategies that engender both accelerated conversion and customer retention.'

Of all US carriers, Southwest Airlines received the most unique visitors (2.9m) in February 2001, followed by United Airlines (2.5m) and American Airlines with 2.4m visitors. These results represented online traffic increases of 19.8%, 40.6% and 126.2% respectively compared to 2000.

The top online travel agencies were Travelocity (6.9m unique visitors), Expedia Travel (6.8m) and Priceline (3m). The results represent a decrease of 3% for Travelocity compared to February 2000, an increase of 10.2% for Expedia and a decrease of 21.9% for Priceline.

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Title Annotation:Industry Trend or Event
Comment:Airline web sites closing gap on online travel agencies - report.(Industry Trend or Event)
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Apr 6, 2001
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