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Booking.com Is Launching A Travel Hackathon With A Grand Prize Of EUR 10,000

The top 20 teams that qualify will start hacking, and the top five will make it to the finals at Booking.com’s headquarters in Amsterdam. | Deadline: Feb 15

Travel tech companies and startups around the world have until 15th of February to submit their proposals to Booking.com. Teams could potentially win an all-expenses paid trip to Amsterdam, and a grand prize of EUR 10,000. The top 20 teams that qualify will start hacking, and the top five will make it to the finals at Booking.com’s headquarters in Amsterdam.

Booking.com invites travel tech startups on a mission to create an innovative solution that empowers travelers to experience the world and enhances their travel or booking experience.

Candidates will receive a number of APIs to have access to the website’s hotel and room static data such as: hotel description and information, star rating, hotel facilities, hotel photos, hotel policies and key collection, room descriptions, room facilities, room info, room photos, and lists of hotel coverage broken down by country, district, region, and city.

Moreover, the hackathon’s APIs will also allow candidates to extract information about hotel availability over time and prices related to available rooms. In addition, candidates will be able to access data about meal offerings, room and hotel information, facilities information, currency data, and extras.

According to Ramallah’s Ibtikar Fund, the region’s travel industry is worth several billion dollars. In 2017, travelers from the Arabian Gulf alone spent more than $90 billion in outbound travel, the vast majority of which was booked through travel agents. MENA’s startup ecosystem has also been flourishing with travel startups. Most recently, Safra has scored an undisclosed investment from Ibtikar Fund, and in 2018 HolidayMe made it to the top 10 investment deals in the region with its $16 million. Startups that utilise travel in their core business model have also made headlines last year, such as Hitchhiker which raised $200,000. 

From Blockchain shuffling hotel distribution, to Artificial Intelligence impacting all aspects of the travel experience, to airlines experimenting with New Distribution Capability (NDC), Booking.com is seeing so much to be excited about. According to the travel tycoon, the travel industry is one of the fastest-growing sectors of the global economy, with bookings worldwide valued at close to $1.6 trillion in 2017. In fact, according to the World Travel & Tourism Council’s 2017 Economic Impact Research Report, the global travel industry grew by 4.6 percent last year, significantly more than the global economy as a whole which is 3 percent.

For more, you can visit the hackathon’s webpage here.


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