Cryptocurrency travel agency Travala.com announced that it started a collaboration with Binance Chain aiming to decentralize its services.
Travala.com intends to roll out decentralized reviews, decentralized accommodation bookings, a decentralized referral system and a decentralized salesforce. The firm’s CEO Juan Otero explained that — in the future — users will be dealing directly with the property owners, leveraging blockchain’s disintermediation potential:
“Under this decentralized model, accommodation seekers will be able to book stays without the need for an intermediary. Said another way, individuals seeking to rent an apartment, bedroom, or hotel room will be able to deal directly with property owners.”
Otero explained that Travala.com will only provide the technology needed to facilitate bookings, including tools for user reputation, dispute mediation and governance mechanisms. Travel service providers will be able to control all the aspects of their online listings and deal directly with their customers.
After Travala.com launches the decentralized accommodation booking system, the firm plans to focus its efforts on developing a decentralized review service. Reviews will be stored on-chain to ensure that they cannot be removed or edited after they have been submitted.
Otero also explained that — in order to prevent fake reviews — Travala.com intends to use tokenized incentives and only allow reviews from users that have visited a given location by booking on the platform.
So far, Otero does not have a clear idea of how much of Travala.com’s business he can move on chain. He explained that “in the long-run, ideally all aspects of the [decentralized online travel agency] will be on-chain” but admitted that this may not be practical:
“Realistically we will have to phase out what aspects of the [firm] are on-chain. As we are closer to the implementation of certain features we will review the trade-offs of being on-chain versus off-chain.”
This is the latest in a long series of announcements by Travala.com which apparently is currently pursuing an aggressive expansion of its business.
Earlier this month, Travala.com added over 600.000 hotels through a partnership with booking giant Agoda. In July, Expedia also partnered with the firm, adding over 700,000 accommodations to the platform, which resulted in a 68% increase in bookings.