With more and more people opting out of air travel for more affordable on ground travel the online ticketing business which is right now mainly dependent on air travel is getting affected too, in the recent WATShow interview Deep Kalra, CEO Makemytrip quoted the total online flight booking is down 21% in Nov, 2008 compared to the last year. Makemytrip which has 40% of it’s business in air travel is planning to grow it’s non-air business to 80% in next three years.
Makemytrip, reportedly has now grown into the largest online bus ticket inventory, It now claims over 8,000 buses, 500 bus operators and over 5000 routes across 14 states in the country. With enough cash flow from it’s Series C funding of $15mn, Makemytrip is going aggressive to capture a larger pie of this huge volume business. As a special offer it is offering 20% cash back to travelers on all bus tickets booked on the website.
This move of Makemytrip might severly affect the smaller standalone players in the market like redbus.in and the recent travelyaari.com but it might not affect much of the holiday package players in general. Redbus.in the prime mover in this space is trying to differentiate itself with the ease of access, it has recently gone mobile partnering with ngpay.
Though still a nascent business, Online Bus ticketing in India is growing at a fast pace lately at a rate of 30% year-on-year, and has a huge untapped potential. It also looks like the competition in the online travel segment is moving away from air to non air segments.