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Before the internet changed the way that humans lived forever, things were a lot different.  One of the ways that things were different was the way that we travel.  Most travelers, domestic or international, would have to book through travel agencies, tour operators, or airlines.  There weren’t websites where one can sit in the comfort of one’s own home, and browse different fares and hotel prices.  One of the great things about the internet was the way that it made international travel exponentially more convenient for everyone.

Of course, this doesn’t mean that the internet is flawless.  One of the issues that does come up is whether you are booking your travel accomodations through a safe and secure website.  In addition, one also wants to make sure that they understand the refund policy associated with the website or aggregator.  One of the websites that has made travel easier all around the world is Trivago.  Founded in Germany, Trivago is proof that sometimes different is better, and shows that a little innovation can go a long way with consumers.

Origin

Trivago was smart to know that there was a gap in the market when it comes to a “smart hotel search” in as early as 2005.  It was becoming clear that the internet was going to soon become the primary way that people book their flights and hotels, and yet, platforms weren’t adapting to the market potential involved with billions of people now using the internet to do so.

It was founded in Dusseldorf, and actually was the first hotel search engine in Germany. This was smart for several reasons.  The first reason is that Germany is strong economically, and tourism is a sizeable part of their economy.  In fact, tourism in Germany employs over 3 million people, and contributes to a large percentage of the people employed in the country.

As a result, the company actually exploded more than people would have guessed.  By 2012, it was one of the fastest growing companies in Germany.  Specifically, it actually doubled the profits that it had obtained only four years before, as more and more international users joined the platform and benefited from the smart hotel engine.  It now is one of the most popular ways to book a hotel in the world.

trivago.com

Design

Trivago, unlike other travel sites, knows that you arrived at its platform to book something, and doesn’t bombard you with pictures and numbers on the first page, or special deals and offers.  In fact, it offers a very minimalist design that simply displays the company’s name, and displays a search bar, where you can enter in any city in the world where Trivago has hotel rooms available for booking.  After you type in a city, hotel deals immediately arise, which you can filter through categories of your choice.  Here are some of the ways that you can filter your search:

  1. Price: There is a price slide which you can move manually, to designate what price range you are looking for.  You can do this conveniently without having to type in any information.
  2. Hotel Class: Decide between 0/1 star hotels, all the way up to 5-star hotels.
  3. Guest Rating: Choose hotels that are 0+ rating, meaning that they are simply “Ok”, or 7.0+, a “Fair” rating, or 8.0+, a “Very Good” rating, based on guest reviews.
  4. Hotel Location: Describe what area in the city you want the hotel to be.
  5. “More filters”: In this section, you can choose even more ways to filter your choice, whether you require free wi-fi, a pool, a spa, a hotel to be pet-friendly, and more. You can even type in your own ideas to find the perfect hotel for you.

Innovation

Trivago claims to be the world’s largest online hotel search site, and the way that it became that way is a little interesting.   Unlike other companies, Trivago actually makes its money using a cost-per-click business model, meaning that instead of attempting to profit through commissions, it actually profits based on the amount of visitors, which allows them to provide more value to consumers.  This model has worked tremendously, as it reports over 100 million visitors per month, and includes almost 200 million hotel ratings.  The Hotel Manager program also allows hotels to be pro-active about the way that they are represented on the website, and there is both a free and fee-based version of this that has helped the company succeed, as well.  It even includes several indexes and rankings to set itself apart from the competition:

  1. The Trivago Hotel Price Index: This is the average overnight accommodation price, that is based on a standard double room, in the most popular cities in the world.
  2. The Trivago Rating Index: This index aggregates all of the ratings for destinations, and along with the price, helps to create “Best Value Destinations”.
  3. Travel Advice Calendars: For those wishing to plan their trips, Trivago has a tool to determine which months are the most affordable and expensive to travel.

Trivago.com has proven itself to be a unique force in the travel industry, and its business model has helped millions of people book their hotels securely and conveniently.  Even their marketing tactics, which include commercials featuring actor Tim Williams, have gained massive attention, spawning articles and fan fiction.  Even the marketing approach was unique, in true Trivago style, as Tim Williams speaks to the screen with no belt and an unbuttoned shirt.

It’s clear that being different has served Trivago.com very well.  It found a way to be the first smart hotel search engine in its country, and eventually found a way to market itself to the world that helped it grow faster than most companies ever will.  These days, whether you use the mobile app or the website, it’s hard to find a company that can truly evaluate worldwide travel the same way that Trivago can.  Of course, why would you need to look elsewhere?  When it comes to travel, Trivago is all you need.

What About Coupons?

Now that you have a coupon code, it is only a matter of redeeming it correctly. Most stores have a place where you can enter the code at the checkout, and you will have the discount applied and the final total after the discount before paying. It is very important that you confirm that the coupon is applied before you complete the checkout since it is very common to make mistakes when entering case-sensitive or random codes. Most of the leading online retailers show you if there is an error when entering the combination. If not, always make sure you check that the final total has actually become cover before you buy.

In case you do not see a place for entering the combination, which might be a User Interface problem or a design glitch, you can always contact the customer service and get help to apply your code successfully.

How to know if your purchase is eligible for discount?

Most coupon codes come with a deadline and a set of terms and conditions. Usually, they are mentioned in the fine print which is easy to miss. If you see that a promo combo is not working, it is possible that you do not fall under the eligibility criteria of the campaign. First of all, check if the deadline for the promotion hasn’t expired yet. Usually, these deals last for less than a week. Following are some of the most common terms and conditions that comewith these campaigns, so make sure that your purchase meets these requirements.

  • Coupon code cannot be applied to the orders previously placed;
  • Should be within the promotional period;
  • Not redeemable for cash or credit;
  • Not valid on items excluded from the promotions;
  • Not valid on sale items;
  • Should be entered prior to completing the order.

Tips and tricks

If your retailer allows you to use multiple codes at once, you can use them strategically to get the best value out of them. For an example, if you have two coupon codes with 30% discount in one and then 15% discount in another, make sure that you used the higher discount to the full price first. That way, when you enter the 15% off to the already lowered price, you get a greater reduction rather than using it vice versa.

Whenever you are using a coupon code, make sure you go for the free shipping option even with some extra purchases since delivery rates applied to the bulk purchase can negate the savings you’ve made through taking part in the promo campaign.

When to use coupon codes

If you find that your deal code has been expired but by only a day or two, do not hesitate to give a call to the customer support to see what they can do. More often than not, they will still provide a discount since at the end of the day, they want you to go ahead with buying from them, not the competitors.

There are many online stores that offer a flat off like 10% or 20% merely for subscribing to their mailing list. If you have a few active emails that you can use and only want to buy that particular product a few times, you can create a few accounts using the different emails to claim that discount. By creating accounts with competition websites, you can monitor and compare prices and deals offered for the same product.