India Travel Portal Bags

New Delhi, May 11 2001: Inc. today announced ( Mr Vinay Kumar – VP Indiamart Travel Division (centre) with Travel team members (click to enlarge)as the winner of its eighth monthly BIG Award for excellence on the Web.big2

Also rated as the best Indian travel portal by, India Travel Promotion Network, ( fetches over 0.75 million pageviews a month, denoting nearly one lakh travel enthusiasts and business travelers from India and abroad, who plan their trips & reservations through the portal.

The juried Britannica Internet Guide Award, or BIG Award, is designed to recognize India’s progress and achievement on the World Wide Web.

The award for overall excellence on the Web is given to a website comprising content pertaining to India. The award is given under four major categories – Overall Excellence on the Web, Content, Design and Technological Excellence.

big1Sites are nominated by editors and sent to members of the jury, who award points to each site to determine the winner. Web sites are judged on the basis of how well they enhance the user experience beyond basic “navigation” and “usability.” The jury on the BIG Awards includes noted musician Ms Shubha Mudgal; editor and vice president of Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc., Dr. Dale Hoiberg; economist, Professor Bibek Debroy; Chief Editor of Encyclopaedia Britannica (India); and the special advisor to the CEO of Inc., Mr Kent Devereaux.

“The Britannica Internet Guide is a navigation service that makes real progress toward the goal of finding reliable information on the Internet,” said Aalok Wadhwa, Managing Director, India (Pvt.) Ltd. “Other services turn up hundreds of irrelevant sites, and there is no way to tell good sources from questionable ones. Our editors make it easy for people to quickly locate authoritative and useful information on thousands of topics. This is a service that’s perfect for both serious and casual Web users.”, which has won the BIG award, is a consolidated travel portal that provides comprehensive and unbiased travel information on Indian destinations. Covering almost all states, cities and travel destinations in India, destinations have been classified both geographically and on basis of tourist-interest including adventure tourism, heritage tours, wildlife, religious places, etc. It gives destination information, along with scenic pictures of the place, offers information like, getting there, accommodation and travel operators in the locale, historical significance of the place, special attractions, local languages climate, sightseeing, shopping etc.

“We work in constant interaction with the State Tourism Boards in India to provide the most accurate and updated information on respective tourist locations. Kerala, Himachal, and Gujarat Tourist Boards have already permitted us to use and promote content available on their websites and other tourism material published by them”, comments Mr Vinay Kumar, VP – Travel Division,

The portal has a special section on the Taj Mahal providing interesting information on its architectural design, historical significance and myths related to the monument Moreover, the portal offers the most comprehensive online directory covering nearly 90% tours operators and 75% hotels in the country that can be used by the visitors to view their catalogs, and send queries regarding their travel and accommodation requirements.

Going a step further, the portal is soon going to launch its Online Hotel Reservation System (OHRS) by integrating the member hotels with the website through specialized software. The portal will now offer additional interactive interface to the visitors to obtain information about room availability in a hotel and even make a hotel reservation online. The OHRS will enable the member hotels to provide room availability status in real-time in a customised fashion at as well as on their respective websites. The visitors thus, after going through information about the tariff, facilities etc. in a hotel, will be able to directly make a room booking online. The whole process will only take 30 seconds before the hotel will send an e-mail confirmation for the booking made. This facility will be made available in arrangement with member hotels that will maintain real-time status of room availability on the site with the help of customized software developed in-house.

“Until now, we had a comprehensive database and online business catalogs of hotels that allowed users to browse through the website of hotels at a chosen destination. Going a step further, they will now be able to get information on room availability in a hotel and even book a room by making payment online,” adds Mr Vinay Kumar.

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