Cleartrip lays out strategy to scale business and provide solutions in the travel sector
Founded in 2006,is a global online travel platform that has been making a name in the travel industry in India. With a vision to become an end-to-end travel destination and a strategy to invest in innovation, the company has been growing bigger by the day.
Speaking about the pandemic’s impact on the travel sector, Ayyappan R, CEO of Cleartrip, says that the travel industry has gone through a host of ups and downs during the pandemic owing to the evolving consumer needs. “The way people have been planning to travel and how they used to travel has completely changed now,” he says. Ayyappan shares that 30 days ago, the domestic travel was back to 85 percent of the pre-COVID levels.
As a travel player, Cleartrip has worked towards making it easier for consumers to avail certain modification options such as flight modification and cancellation.
Owing to the current scenario with the new COVID-19 variant spreading rapidly and the norms changing by the day, customers have a lot of confusion and concerns regarding travel. However, from a demand perspective, even though domestic air travel has seen some demand, international travel is not entirely operational yet, but on the other hand, hotels have been receiving strong demand.
Ayyappan believes that the hotel sector is going to see a strong comeback because of revenge travel. Travel will bounce back in terms of domestic travel once the confusion around the omicron variant subsides. Another interesting trend that has been noticed is that people are now choosing to drive their own cars, which is indirectly contributing to the demand for hotels. Additionally, alternate accommodations such as guest houses and PGs have seen a huge uplift in demand.
Speaking of future roadmaps for Cleartrip, he shares that the company wants to be an end-to-end destination when it comes to travel. “We want consumers to come and experience anything related to travel on Cleartrip as a platform,” he says. The company plans to have every mode of transportation on that platform and intends to provide an end-to-end holiday package booking for its consumers.
“What we want is not just the booking journey but a step ahead of the booking journey itself when it comes to discovery,” says Ayyappan.
Commenting on acquisitions and inorganic growth, he mentions that Cleartrip is always on the lookout for the right set of partners. He believes that in the next six to nine months, many exciting things in terms of consolidation will happen in the travel space.
In terms of investment, Ayyappan shares that travel is one of the top three focus businesses and massive amounts of investments will be put into the space in order to scale the business.
Edited by Kanishk Singh