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Press releases

TRAVELODGE ANNOUNCES £20M PRICE WAR FOLLOWING NEW E-COMMERCE DRIVE

5th Mar 2007


Budget hotel chain Travelodge, today launched the first phase of a 1m website development programme that will enable online customers to purchase goods for their stay as well as book rooms.

Over the coming weeks, web customers will be able to personalise their own Travelodge homepage, reserve cots, pre-pay for breakfast and even a night's sleep for their pets. As the programme develops throughout 2007, customers will be able to purchase tickets to events and attractions. The technology could also enable Travelodge to partner with a broader range of online retailers to sell products customers can use during their stay.

Travelodge's Chief Operating Officer, Guy Parsons said, "We now drive over five million reservations through our website each year and attract over half a million users every week. This new e-commerce strategy will maximise our market leading web position and offer more convenience and services to our customers."

"The development of an online retailing channel provides us with more opportunities to drive revenue prior to our customers' stay. For now, we will be focusing on basics such as breakfast and evening meals in bar cafe sites. However this technology could enable us to retail anything from overnight cosmetics to best seller books."

Travelodge's web offer is driven by a price strategy akin to the budget airline model, where all of the best rates are available online and in advance. The budget chain has today announced a further round of price cuts reducing room rates by 20m in 2007.

Travelodge is expecting the new price drive along with the opening of 35 new hotels in 2007 to again dramatically increase usage of travelodge.co.uk. Over 80% of its reservations are made via the web and the new 'My Travelodge' function is designed to capture enhanced levels of reservation data so the budget chain can grow its customer database. The website already has a membership of around half a million and Travelodge believes that this number will grow to a million by the end of 2007.

Parsons said, "The My Travelodge page works both ways in that it offers customers a more personalised shopping experience while providing us with important customer data. Our online success to date has enabled us to maintain our low cost model and translate this into low prices for our customers."

-ends-

For more information contact:

Shula Gillam, PR Executive
Tel: 01844 358703
Mob: 07863 342 317
Email: shula.gillam@travelodge.co.uk

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