This Dutch travel startup of the year has partnered with Ctrip: How will it affect the travel industry?

This Dutch travel startup of the year has partnered with Ctrip: How will it affect the travel industry?

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One can conveniently say both Dutch and China share a very good rapport be it education cooperation, investing in startups and a lot more. Following the investment by Bookings holding on DiDi Chuxing, in another news, one more Dutch startup has announced a partnership with a Chinese travel company recently.

Dutch travel startup Hi,hi Guide that connects travelers with locals, has announced the collaboration with Ctrip. With this move, Ctrip’s app users will now have access to Hi,hi Guide’s authentic experiences with locals at 10 major European cities. Also as, the competition is becoming intense, especially in Europe, when Skyscanner under Ctrip competes against the likes of Kayak, and Trivago.

Founded by Hubert Nijmeijer, Tom Groeneveld in 2014, Hi, hi guide popularity is soaring higher and in fact, won the ‘Travel Startup of the Year’ award of the Netherlands in June 2018.

On the other hand, Ctrip is China’s biggest travel agency offering services like hotel reservations, air ticketing, packaged tours, and more. Being one of the worlds biggest travel company, it trades in the U.S on NASDAQ with a market cap of$25 billion.

Founded in 1999 by Jianzhang Liang, Neil Shen, the company offers over 1,000 packaged tours to both domestic Chinese and overseas destination and serving over 10,000 individual travelers monthly.

Now, the Hi,hi guide an Enschede startup, will help Chinese travelers to meet the local guide to discover the authentic city be it a fashion expert in Paris, an architecture fanatic in Rome or a foodie in Lisbon. Furthermore, Ctrip will offer a broader portfolio of local activities with Hi, hi Guide help.  Currently, the website is only available in English and Chinese.

Hi,hi Guide founder Hubert Nijmeijer said “Chinese Free Independent Travellers (FIT) likes to experience the true destination and learn about their culture and history. Our partnership with Ctrip allows them to get in touch with the people who know their city, culture and history best, namely our local guides.”

Ctrip a threat to Booking.com?

Once, Jane Jie Sun, CEO of Ctrip said that Booking.com is huge and far ahead of anybody else. Having said that, both Booking.com and Ctrip are partners, offering each other their respective hotel supplies for their customers.

Further, Ctrip is already making aggressive moves in the West especially in Europe, where it is a bit easy to crack the market than the U.S. To be more specific, the powerful duo Expedia and Priceline dominate the US market.

It’s worth mentioning here that Expedia owns Hotels.com, Hotwire, Trivago, Travelocity, Orbitz, and HomeAway, while the Priceline owns Booking.com, Priceline, KAYAK, Rentalcars.com, OpenTable, and others.

Ctrip’s acquisition spree!

China’s top online travel service, Ctrip is on an acquisition spree over the years and it has helped the company to build a solid position in the market. Back in 2015, Ctrip tied up with eLong and Qunar and acquired Skyscanner in 2016 and Trip.com in 2017. Having said that, the company is poised to capture a larger chunk of the business travel market in the West.

With the recent partnership with Hi,hi guide, Ctrips should be able to expand its international footprints and consolidate market share in new places. What’s your opinion on this partnership? Do let us know in the comment section below.

For more updates, stay tuned to Silicon Canals.

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