Looks like no area of the industry is safe from those wanting to try the flash sale concept – this time its the cruise sector with UK metasearch site CruiseCompare having a go.
The idea is similar to the Groupon model, but is in very early stages of development and is purely a test to see what kind of take-up it gets by users, says founder Tom Fotheringham.
Initially, users will receive a message pushing them to a time-limited deal for a particular cruise product, each will be available for seven days, with reminders going out again at the 48 -hour mark.
It is the first significant move by the metasearch engine into a new distribution model since the startup arrived on the scene last year [TLabs Showcase - CruiseCompare].
To help with the first flash sale, CruiseCompare has teamed up with price comparison site Cheapflights to utilise its database of 2.1 million email subscribers to drive interest.
Fotheringham says the community buying aspect of Groupon – where a deal only kicks in when a certain number of people opt to buy – may be implemented in the coming months, depending on feedback and take-up.
“The group trigger we be built in a few months when we can prove the concept and get a fixed allocation from the cruise liners – for example, 100 outside cabins at ¬£299, then when out sold that’s it.”