4 years ago

Social seating one year on: move over airlines – hotels, rail and events get a piece of the action

Just over a year ago KLM lifted the lid on its Meet & Seat concept integrating social networking into the flight booking process.

Inevitably it divided opinion with some raising privacy concerns and others praising KLM for taking the plunge.

KLM wasn’t the only company trialling the social seating concept as Satisfly unveiled Air Baltic as its first partner three months later, SeatID came to market in November and FaceBelt was making noises about it mobile app launch.

So where are they now?

KLM tells us that Meet & Seat has seen the sharing of 30,000 profiles since launch. The service has also recently been integrated into the check-in process doubling users every day. Previously it was only available via the My Trip button on the website.

But perhaps more exciting for the industry as a whole is what SeatID is doing. The startup has extended its service to hotels, trains, online ticketing and stadia.

Not only can users find useful contact or a like-minded person on a plane using social media profiles but also they can do the same for trains, sporting and other events or use profiles to see who is staying or has stayed at a hotel.

The startup recently announced it is available on Indonesia-based startup Valadoo as well as Coupafly and says chief executive Eran Savir there are more in the pipeline.

SeatID was also named a Gartner Cool Vendors 2013 in social software and collaboration.

FaceBelt declined to comment and Tnooz has also contacted Satisfly for an update.

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About the Writer :: Linda Fox

Linda Fox is deputy editor for Tnooz. For the past eight years she has worked as a freelance journalist across a range of B2B titles including Travolution, ABTA Magazine, Travelmole and the Business Travel Magazine.

In this time she has also undertaken corporate projects for a number of high profile travel technology, travel management and research companies.

Prior to her freelance career she covered hotels and technology news for Travel Trade Gazette for seven years. Linda joined TTG from Caterer & Hotelkeeper where she worked on the features desk for more than five years.



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