BIG ONLINE TRAVEL BUCKS: More than 50% of major US travel firms plan to spend $1m plus on online marketing over the next 12 months, a survey by JupiterResearch claims. One on five – or 20% – reckon they’ll outlay more than $10m. Search and email marketing will get the bulk of that money. Unfortunately, the survey did not reveal whether the respondent’s intended online ad spend was going up or down or if there had been a shift in allocations. Some clues, though, in an Interactive Advertising Bureau report that suggested the online spend for US leisure travel marketers slipped slightly for the first six months of 2008 from $687m to $667m. Travel Trends, October 13, 2008.

SHOPPING.COM LAUNCHES TRAVEL: Comparison search engine Shopping.com will launch a travel category to be powered by Wego.com. Under the deal, the two companies will split ad click revenue. Shopping.com claims to be Australia’s leading online shopping comparison site with more than one million visitors a month. Wego.com has been pumping out the partnership releases lately, though not without some issues, recently being forced to retract an announcement that it had signed a partnership agreement with one of Australia’s largest wholesalers, Creative Holidays. Travel Trends, October 13, 2008.

LEGAL STOUSH: A Spanish court has ruled against the policy of low cost carrier Ryanair to cancel tickets booked through third-party websites. The ‘Mercantile Court’ in Madrid banned Ryanair from cancelling tickets booked through the Rumbo website. It also asked Ryanair to remove its warning against screen scrapers from its website and to stop discrediting online resellers. Travel Trends, October 13, 2008.

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