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Nick Wharton By
Posted 24 Oct, 2017 | No comments
Posted in: Country Information

Recently I was contacted by Relovate to try out their booking service and I have to say that I was pretty impressed. While there were some things that could be improved, overall the service offers all the things I love about the best booking platforms, plus some new features that I never even thought of.

In this article I’m going to briefly review my experience with Relovate so that you can decide if it’s something you want to try. While I have been hired to test this product by the company, I will do my very best to keep this as unbiased as possible. I have not been told by Relovate that I have to write positively about the product and this review will be honest.

What is Relovate?

As they put it on their website: “Relovate inspires travelers to Stop Booking Around and take full control of trip planning and booking. Relovate blends world class travel product with delightfully easy planning and booking software, in a private, ad-free workspace. Now, travelers can collaborate with others, consider options, engage providers and launch plans directly from published content. The effect is the world’s first online travel solution connecting every stakeholder.”

 

How I would explain it is an intuitive and interactive online travel agent for independent travellers and travellers who are looking to book all of their travels in one spot and collaborate with friend and family to make the best (and cheapest) possible trip.

Relovate allows you to book every aspect of your travels (like flights, cars, hotels, activities, food, attractions etc.) in one spot. Create your own vacation / travel package and save money by booking it all together. You essentially become your own travel agent, without having to shop around on 10 different websites.

The Main Features of Relovate

Relovate includes all of the basic booking features that you’d expect from a normal booking engine like booking flights, cars, hotels etc, but there are a few key features that really set it apart.

Explore choices & organize your travel options

With Relovate you can search for everything privately, consider and compare every option, save all your trip plans, monitor price changes, build your budget and create your own custom itinerary.

Collaborate by inviting friends, family & colleagues to your trips

Plan together in real time and instantly see all suggestions, chat about it privately. Everyone can book individually if they want to.

One place for all your reservations

Find great prices from brands you trust. Earn your loyalty points and miles from booked hotels, cars & flights. No fees. No ads. No cookies.

The Process

To utilitze Relovate properly, I think the best thing to do is to use the Trip Planner function. First go to their website, then click the Trip Planner Icon:

Then start your new itinerary by clicking “Flight” to start shopping for your flights. If you’re going on a  longer trip with multiple destinations, I recommend trying out the “Multi-City” functionality which will allow you to build your own flight itinerary.

After you’re done choosing your flight(s), click “Search” and then choose the best flight(s) from the list. Click “Consider” if you’re not ready to book right away. If you’re not already signed up, you’ll be prompted to do so. Once you’re signed in and you click “Consider” you can then click Trip Planner again and you’ll see your flight iternary in front of you like this:

From this screen, you can click on the icons next to each of your destinations (like hotels, activities, restaurants etc.) and book them directly from the Trip Planner screen!

Improvements That Are Being Made

One downside of this part of the booking process is that if you’ve only “considered” your itinerary, then Relovate doesn’t show the dates for each destination, so you’ll have to remember the dates you’ll be there because you’ll be prompted to enter them upon booking a hotel, restaurant or activity.

When you’re done choosing everything in your itinerary, you can click on “Budget” (I think this button should say “Continue Booking” or something more obvious). Once you click Budget you’ll see all of your considered items in an easy to read list. Simply check the box next to the ones you’re sure about and you can book and pay for it all right there!

Relovate Booking Engine Home Page

That’s what really makes Relovate interesting is the ability to build your entire itinerary and book it all from one place.

Lastly, Relovate is still in the process of adding in some of the low-cost carriers, so some of the routes are a bit more expensive then they should be. I’ve contacted the creators of Relovate and they’ve assured me that they’re in the process of adding all of these carriers and by the time you read this, they may have already added them.

My Experience With Relovate

After spending around an hour creating my own trip on Relovate.com, one main thing came to mind: “Why hasn’t anyone thought of this before?”.

Dariece and I basically plan all of our own travels like this all of the time. We search for multiple flights on other flight booking engines, then book our rooms on a separate website for hotels, then choose what activities we’ll do by hunting around on TripAdvisor and we book it and pay for it all separately.

Relovate allows you to do all of this from one platform and while parts of the interface was a bit cluttered when I was using it, but they seem to have improved it since I first used it (mainly the Trip Planner which I’ve screenshotted above).

There are a few improvements that need to be made to the user area so that it’s easier to navigate, but they’ve already improved a lot since I used it last. Clearly they’re taking the recommendations from us and other people who trialed the service and gave feedback.

Overall Thoughts

Relovate has a ton of potential and once they add all of the low-cost carriers, then I think this will be a great tool with incredible trip planning functionality.

I love building my own itinerary and including all aspects of it like hotels and restaurants and flights and I’m sure people are going to love sharing itineraries with friends and family members and creating a cool trip together using Relovate.

I probably wouldn’t use it for a world trip, booking an itinerary over multiple months, but for people looking to book a 2 week holiday, this could be the perfect tool.

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Nick Wharton

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Nick is the co-founder, editor and author of Goats On The Road. He contributes to numerous other media sites regularly and shares his knowledge of travel, online entrepreneurship and blogging with the world whenever he can. Nick’s advice has been featured on the Lonely Planet, CNN Money, Business Insider and Forbes.

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