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Travelocity celebrates 20 years of helping people "Wander Wisely"

Travelocity is celebrating its first two decades by giving one person 20 minutes to spend 20 thousand dollars on travel.

DALLAS – Travel in 1996 meant heading to the mall to meet with a travel agent, consulting the yellow pages to find listings for select air and hotel chains, or even going to the airport to book and purchase an airline ticket. But for a few early adopters it meant firing up their dial-up modems, logging on to an internet service like AOL or CompuServe, and booking their travel online. This was made possible on March 12, 1996, when Travelocity pioneered a new form of travel company, the full-service online travel agency, changing the way that people journey around the world forever.

Within the first 90 days after launch, Travelocity registered approximately 140,000 users – a number which grew to over 20 million users just a decade later. And while booking travel online was a novelty reserved for the tech-savvy in those early days, almost 60% of leisure travelers in 2014 either exclusively or usually booked their travel through online channels, according to data from the Phocuswright’s Consumer Travel Report Seventh Edition.

“When Travelocity launched in 1996, it was more than just a new online retailer selling products appearing on the web – it ushered in a whole new era for the travel industry. Prior to Travelocity, the process of booking travel offered little to no consumer insight into pricing or availability,” said Brad Wilson, vice president and general manager of Travelocity brand. “But our launch meant that information that was previously the domain of a few became available to all. It truly marked the democratization of the travel industry.”

The celebration of a 20th anniversary for any dot-com is a rare occasion. From its beginnings in in a Dallas-Fort Worth area office park 20 years ago, Travelocity’s launch during the earliest period of the commercial internet makes it older than many of the largest, most well known sites on the web, including Google (1998), Facebook (2004) and Twitter (2006).

20 Years. 20 Minutes. 20 Grand.
To celebrate 20 years of making it easier for travelers to “Wander Wisely”, Travelocity gave one lucky person the chance to visit Travelocity and go on a 20 minute shopping spree to book as much travel as they can on Travelocity within that timeframe (up to $20,000). To get in the running for this “once every two decades” opportunity, hopeful travelers must share a picture of themselves from 1996 on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #Travelocity20Contest. The submission that best represents the decade that launched grunge, Ally McBeal, and of course, Travelocity, was chosen – and given the chance to score the travel bonanza of a lifetime.

In celebration of its 20th anniversary as the world’s first full-service OTA, Travelocity looks at how the Internet has revolutionized the way we travel. (PRNewsFoto/Travelocity).
Travelocity Infographic

Co-Founder & Chief Editor - TravelDailyNews Media Network | Website | + Posts

Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales.

She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.