A Nice Anniversary Surprise for Our Parents

When my boyfriend and I decided to surprise my parents with a surprise anniversary dinner, we originally thought it was going to just be the four of us. However, my two brothers and their families wanted to join in the fun. Both of my brothers have pretty large families with one having six children and the other having five. That made a total of 19 people getting together for this celebration. My oldest brother said we should look into a limo or party bus. I saw an advert stating to view our site for party buses not long before that, so I decided to go ahead and do just that.

I was really surprised with the buses that I saw. I thought that they would be nice, but I was not prepared for how luxurious they actually are. I was also impressed with how many different sizes there were. We just needed a small one because there were only 19 of us. If we had double that amount, there would still be a bus big enough for us. Continue reading →

Tips for Saving Money when Booking Plane Tickets

When travelling further than a few hundred miles, whether you’re off on holiday, visiting family or friends or going on a business trip, booking your flight is, of course, a necessity. Flight prices are constantly rising, too, and it can be easy to end up spending way more than you’d hoped on your flight, leaving less money to spend on things like fun and extra expenses. Sometimes, the exact same journey can cost hundreds more just because you booked it on a different website or with a different company, or because you booked it at a certain time. Here are some top tips to help you find a cheap flight and avoid extra, unnecessary fees.
Aside from price, what’s important to you when booking a flight?

Cabin class
Getting my seat of choice (window/aisle)
Flight time
Airline
None/Other

See results without voting
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Comparing Prices

No matter what your destination, never go straight to the airline’s website to book your tickets. Say you’re flying Manchester, England to Munich, Germany. You could get there on British Airways, EasyJet, RyanAir or any German flight company. Why fly with Company A if you can fly with Company B for half the price? Always compare flights on travel comparison websites. Good suggestions include:

Skyscanner.com. Skyscanner is easy to use, and you can easily compare prices, flight times and days of departure and arrival. The website also doesn’t take a processing fee for using their website, so it can work out cheaper than other sites.
Travelsupermarket.com (travelling to and from the UK only). Another site that’s easy to use, and good if you’re flexible with your UK airports. A flight from Leeds might cost more than a flight from Newcastle – compare UK airports and see what’s available.
Other great comparison websites include Opodo and Kayak. Compare several sites at once to get the best deal you can.

Flight tickets comparison websites

Student Universe

Student Deals

If you’re a student, websites like Student Universe sometimes have excellent and exclusive offers available. You can also find a great selection of hostels, tours and activities on this site. Add Student Universe to your list if you’re in full-time education. This won’t guarantee the best deal, however – carry on comparing with other travel websites for the best deal.
Source
Baggage Allowance

Once you’ve booked your flight, check with the airline’s website what their free baggage allowance is. Some airlies, particularly on long-haul flights, offer a fairly generous allowance, usually around 23kg (50 pounds) for checked baggage and around 8-10kg (18-22 pounds) of carry-on luggage. Some also offer an extra accessory such as a laptop bag or a purse.

If this is the case, then you won’t need to check in extra luggage. 23kg is quite a lot, but a full case can carry over 30 pounds. Keeping an eye on what you pack will save you unexpected weight fees. However, some airlines with shorter flights have less generous allowances.

RyanAir, for example, will only let you take 10kg (22 pounds) of carry-on luggage, and you have to pay extra to take in a checked bag. This is usually around £15 one-way. If you can, see if you can only take a carry-on bag onto the plane. 10kg is quite a lot, and easily enough for a week’s worth of clothes. The only thing is with using this method is that you can’t take any liquids or sharp objects in your bag, so this is up to you.

Of course, the purpose of your trip will depend heavily on your decision. If you’re a student going to Germany for a week, you could just take your backpack on board and avoid a £30 check-in bag fee (which is what I did in April 2014). If you’re going on a business trip, however, you might prefer to pay extra for the suitcase.
Deals for Flexible Dates

Cheapflights.com (or .co.uk) is excellent if your dates are flexible. They are constantly updating cheap deals for flights for certain days – if they fall within your travelling time frame, it’s worth booking with them. You could save yourself a chunk of change.
Source
Extra Tips

Take your time booking your flights, as every penny you save can be spent towards something else. Beware of these extra fees too, and consider whether you need to purchase them.

Parking at the airport: would it be cheaper or easier to get a taxi, or for somebody to drop you off?
Overweight cases: weigh your cases before you leave. An extra kilogram of weight could cost a lot.
Insurance: do you really need insurance? Are you already protected by another company and don’t need to buy what the airline offers?
Selected seating: would you want to pay extra to choose your seat, or might you consider getting a ‘random’ seat for free?

Saudia; Saudi Arabian Airlines Review; Online booking problems

Traveling in Saudi Arabia

Saudia or Saudi Arabian Airlines is the main operator of aircraft in Saudi Arabia, this Saudi Arabian Airlines review will give my opinions on this airline and the many online booking problems I have had.If you are working in Saudi Arabia and want to get anywhere quickly then flying is your best option. The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is mainly desert, and the cities are separated by many hundreds of miles (or Kilometers if you like these newfangled measures.) Traveling in the Kingdom therefore is best done by air, the countries main operator being Saudi Arabian Airlines or Saudia as most people call them here. I hope that this review of Saudi Airlines (Saudia) is helpful for you.

However at peak times it can be difficult to get a flight and you may have to drive, the following hubs can give you more information regarding this option; Saudi Arabia Travel, Saudi Arabia Driving, and Long Distance drives in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Airlines safety video
Saudi Airports

The main airports, Riyadh, Jeddah and Dammam are quite modern and well maintained with all of the usual facilities. Smoking is not allowed, however the Saudis ignore this and smoke everywhere!

Internet access is on the whole not available, not even where they say it is in my experience. Food and drink is “OK”, but nothing to write home about either, price wise it is a little more expensive than outside but not as inflated as in some airports.
Duty free shopping is generally more expensive than the shops outside, with no tax this is really just last minute shopping! But don’t expect to find a nice bottle of Gin for your favorite aunt!

Main International Airports in Saudi Arabia
show route and directions
A markerriyadh – Riyadh Saudi Arabia
[get directions]

Riyadh Airport in Saudi Arabia
B markerjeddah – Jeddah Saudi Arabia
[get directions]

Jeddah Airport Saudi Arabia
C markerdammam – Dammam, Ad Dammam, Al Khobar Saudi Arabia
[get directions]

Dammam Airport Saudi Arabia
Buy Saudia Ticket Online
Book Flight with Saudi Airlines Online
Book Flight with Saudi Airlines Online | Source
Online Booking your Ticket for Saudia

There are many agents scattered around from which to buy your ticket without any difficulty, most employ someone who has enough English to help you if you speak no Arabic.

Buying a ticket direct from Saudi Airlines on their website is recommended, however I still have never once been able to do so as the website has always failed whenever I have tried to book. I have asked other people and some can book without problem but many cannot manage to complete the booking process through the Saudi Airlines website. Online booking although recommended is not always possible!

Saudi Airlines are now trying to cut out the agents by charging them a fee which they have to pass on to the customer, therefore it is cheaper to book online, I just hope that they improve their system enough for me to book next time I need them!

I have also had problems with using the machines in the airports to book onto the flight when not having to check my luggage, when the tickets have been bought online by my company the machines do not recognize the codes on the tickets and I still have to queue to get my seat on the plane.
Landing in Riyadh
Check In – Saudi Arabia Airlines

Each airport is quite well built and designed, however check in can be a pain in the posterior regions, especially in Riyadh.

In Riyadh they are far too slow and there are not enough check in desks, they suggest that you use the electronic check in machines to get your boarding pass if you don’t have any luggage to check but I have yet to make this to work for me, I am advised this is something to do with having used an agent rather than booking direct through Saudi Airlines.

The Saudis use their usual method of walking directly to the front of the queue to argue with the guys issuing boarding passes in an attempt to get seen quicker, in some cases this works for them, especially if they have a friend that works there or a friend of a friend of a friend.. Most of the time it just makes things even slower and more difficult for everyone! In Jeddah I now go one better as I really do have friends (Saudi drinking buddies) working there and get my boarding passes and luggage checked without being in a queue at all, as long as they are on duty!

The electronic signboards are more often than not wrong, they will tell you which gate to depart from and you will depart from another, it can be quite confusing as they sometimes “forget” to make announcements in English and everyone else starts running toward a different gate!

The security checks are generally quite relaxed, people are friendly and things move quite rapidly just like any other airport. However please note that the ladies will have a separate route through all of their own to prevent embarrassment in front of the men.
Saudi Arabian Airlines Fleet
Saudi Airlines 747
Saudi Airlines 747 | Source
Onboard Saudi Arabian Airlines

The planes are reasonable, a few minor maintenance issues such as TV’s that don’t work or have no sound for long haul flights. Recliners that fail on the seats that mean you either cannot recline or you have no choice but to! I have even found incorrect cushions on the seats meaning that you are sat on an incline (I used to work for a seat manufacturer, I spent a few minutes on one flight swapping all of the cushions in my row on the plane until everyone was sat “flat” and comfortably!)

The food is OK, nothing special but it is at least edible and identifiable as being food. Most Saudis are quite demanding to say the least so they have to make sure that things are passable at least as they will complain quite bitterly.

Being seated on a Saudi plane can become interesting, some Saudis will just take any seat as it is “their” airline, they will try to take the best locations even if they have not been allocated them on their boarding pass, a long suffering Indian or such like will have no chance of moving them if it is their seat! Otherwise minor arguments can arise between Saudi’s the displaced one insiting to be moved to business class rather than having the other moved and so on – I am glad that I don’t work on these planes!

Segregation of the Sexes on Saudi Airlines

The other problem on board is women, Saudi women will only want to be sat next to their family or other women, anything else is unacceptable. This can lead to a lot of seat shuffling before departure as no allowance for this is made when allocating the boarding passes.

Thankfully this can be a short process as on many of the flights the number of women travelling is very small, however I have seen women leave the aircraft as they cannot sit alone!

In one incident, there was a woman that was made to stand for some time while they tried to find a seat on a full plane, the air stewardess spotted a row with a Filipina woman with a small child sat on a seat and ordered the Filipina to sit the child on her lap so that the other woman could sit. The Filipina started to complain that the child was entitled to a seat but was unable to produce a boarding pass to show as such, the stewardess was very rude to her and made her take the child, sitting the lone woman there. A phone call later, the real mother of the child appeared, the Filipina only being the maid; the mother having been sitting in peace with her husband at the other end of the plane. At this point it seemed that all out war erupted as this woman screamed and shouted at the stewardess and the poor woman that had been seated in her child’s place!
Dammam Airport Saudi Arabia

The worst airport in my mind was Dammam airport, the first time I arrived there was for an international flight, my internal flight was delayed by over an hour due to a storm, which we bounced around in to the tune of people throwing up for an hour before being allowed to land. I guessed that our ongoing flight would also be delayed by the same storm but time was still going to be short, so we looked on the board and headed straight for the indicated gate.

We arrived there at the opposite side of the airport and it was deserted! So we asked, the person we asked looked at the board and said it was right, wait there, so we asked someone else, they took us back to where we had started and pushed us through an entrance next to where we had come in, the security check and passport control area which was totally packed with people queuing.

We were asked which flight and were directed into a queue that was neither moving nor had anyone in the kiosk to check the passports! We stood here for a few minutes reassured by the fact that others in this queue were on the same flight. Until someone started asking in Arabic for all of the people that were on our flight to move to a different queue, which we all promptly did. The first person went to the kiosk to have their passport checked, there was a problem so the guy in the kiosk disappeared, minutes passed, more minutes passed, our old queue was now open and moving – rapidly! Our flight was now “boarding” and no one was letting us through, so I asked, they looked confused, they wandered off!

Eventually they called us to yet another kiosk and split the line to move us quickly through but it was a farce!

How to Make a Travel Website? How an Online Travel Based Search Engine Works? Updated on September 1, 2012

There are many times we see online travel websites like www.Expedia.co.uk, and ask ourselves how these travel based company making money? How to make an online travel website? How do an online travel search engine works? The reason why we want to know the answer to this question is to know whether or not we can make a travel based portal and start making money like other online travel companies. There are many online portals offering Flights, Hotels, Holidays, etc. and making huge amount of money. Can we become a travel agent and make huge money? How these travel agents are making money?

In 2009 Expedia’s first quarter profit was $635.7 Million. How these portals making money with just an online travel search engine? Is it easy to make a travel based website?

You can too have a travel based website by becoming an affiliate of any travel portal. There are two ways of making a travel based website.

First: By becoming an affiliate of a travel website.

Second: Making your own travel website and get keep the whole profit with you. That means you don’t have to share the profit with anyone.

Many travel websites provide an online travel engine for free. You can use it as your own and get commission up to 10%. This is the first method.

Second method is little difficult. You have to invest lot of money for making huge amount of money. If you have money or you are an existing travel agent and want to make your own travel based website, then second option is better for you.

The first thing you have to do is to buy the domain and the hosting. This is the initial step and you have to do that in either you want to become an affiliate or you want to have your own website. After that design your website and make it live. I know the website would be without search engine and you can’t make online searches for flights, hotels or holidays.

To make a website you need one Global Distribution System (GDS) from where you can get the latest fares. There are many GDS available in the market, like Amadeus (www.amadeus.com), Worldspan (www.worldspan.com), Sabre (www.sabre.com), Galileo (www.travelport.com/lob/gds/galileo.aspx), etc. Once you have an agreement to use any of the GDS, then you can start making your travel based search engine. After this you have to decide the technology on which you would like to make your travel based search engine. It could be PHP, JAVA, .Net or any other technology you would like to prefer. You can use open source languages like PHP or Java, if your budget is low. Now with the help of a good programmer you can tart making travel based search engine as per your needs.

The GDS takes requests and sends the response in XML format, as it’s relatively fast and easy to use. All the request/response you send/receive from GDS is in XML format. The response we get from the GDS is shown on the website by cutting the tags from the XML. Yes, to make your own search engine you need one good programmer and one web designer. There are few companies who build travel based search engines, you can take their help as well. They can provide you travel based search engine as per your requirement at affordable prices.
Internet Booking Engine

Internet Booking Engine
Create your own Travel Portal with B2B/B2C and Online Booking Search Engine for Flights, Hotels and Holidays.

Online Bookable Search Engine for Travel Portals

Online Bookable Search Engine for Travel Portals
Get Online Bookable Search Engine for Travel Portals with B2B/B2C, Flights, Hotels and Holidays. Also, get Annual Maintenance for Travel Portals at affordable price.

Hawaii Inter Island Airfare

It is now September of 2007 and the three (3) local airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, Aloha Airlines and Go Airlines are still in a fierce inter-island airfare war, which seems to be wearing the airlines down to bottom in dollars. Nevertheless, all three airlines are relentless in regards to their competing airlines and had resulted in drastic discounts and even at $0 (giveaway) at one point. Now the standard airfare among the three airlines is set at $39 one way base fare, which is $44.90 with all taxes included. This is a big difference from when the airfares were at $78 minimum one way just over a year ago.

With this airfare war going on and the inter-island fare standard at $39, how are the travel agents handling this? Not only the travel agents but also the travel booking engines on the world wide web are charging fees when customers are booking the inter-island air travels. As such, many of the customers are rushing over to the airlines websites and trying to book directly to avoid any booking fees.

Even with this fare war, the airlines have placed some payment restrictions for all website reservation bookings as follows:

Aloha Airlines will only accept credit card payments with the billing address being in the United States, which Go Airlines has set up the same restrictions. However, Canadians and Australians are also able to purchase the promotional inter-island airfare on the Hawaiian Airlines website.

Now for the rest of you that are not from the United States and still wishing to purchase the promotional airfares, you can always call the airlines direct over the phone and reserve at a higher price, or reserve directly with Fun Hawaii Travel and get the same promotional airfare being offered without any fees.

Low Cost Air Ticket Booking

Flight tickets are considered to be the most demanded ones in the recent days. There has been a tremendous increase in the number of flights in the last 2 years primarily because of the increase in the number of people who prefer travelling by flight. There are several kinds of air tickets that have been introduced by the airline companies. Here, we can have a short discussion about several kinds of air tickets.

Based on the comfort level and expectation of the passengers who board the flight, there has been the classification of air tickets. The general classification which is present common among all airline providers is the economy class air ticket and the business class air ticket. The economy class air ticket is pretty cheap and has the required things for a smooth journey. There is no provision of food for free; only a welcome drink is given. This is generally preferred for short distance travels. The business class air ticket is for the elite group which gives meals and other luxury facilities and is suited for the long distance travel.

Air tickets of budgeted rate are also available before 6 months from the date of journey. When there is a proper planning involved, one can go ahead and book these tickets and save a lot of money. The air tickets are now available online in the internet where one can make the bookings as per their wish. The payment for these air tickets can also be made online. The technological development has gone to the extent that one can not only book air tickets but also get the boarding pass and book for a seat as per their choice online. There are also the options of rescheduling these air tickets according to our comfort but before a certain notice period. Thus, with this flexibility only, there is huge bookings and travel made by the people through flights.

Book Cheap Flights Online Bangalore To New Delhi

Simply book a flight that suits your budget and suits your timings for your journey Bangalore to New Delhi. International airlines like JetLite, Kingfisher, Air India, SpiceJet, Indigo, British Airways, GoAir and others are offering affordable and comfortable flights for all tourists.

Air India Bangalore-New Delhi flight schedule-
Air India first flight no. 9804 departs from Bangalore at 5.45AM and arrive New Delhi at 8.35AM. This flight operates only on Saturday. Last flight no.623 flies Bangalore at 8.10PM and arrives in New Delhi at 10.45PM which operates on daily basis. There are 5 other flights in schedule for the tourists to travel Bangalore-New Delhi.

Kingfisher Bangalore-New Delhi flight schedule-
Kingfisher flight no.0202 takes off from Bangalore at 6.05AM and arrives in New Delhi at 8.50AM which operates on Saturdays only. The last flight no. 0208 departs from Bangalore at 8.45PM and reaches in New Delhi at 11.30PM. There are around 20 more flights operating at different schedules for the tourists to travel from Bangalore to New Delhi.

SpiceJet Bangalore-New Delhi flight schedule-
SpiceJet first flight no.224 departs Bangalore at 8.45AM and arrives in New Delhi at 11.35AM which operates on daily basis. Last flight no.216 fly from Bangalore at 8.40PM and reaches New Delhi at 11.25PM. There are 3 other flights operating for tourists at different timings.

Indigo Bangalore-New Delhi flight schedule-
Indigo first flight no.482 departs from Bangalore at around 5.50AM and arrives in New Delhi at 11.30AM. This flight is in operation everyday for the tourists. Last Indigo flight no.106 fly from Bangalore at around 7.50PM and arrives in New Delhi at 10.30PM. This flight flies everyday except on Saturdays. Tourists can check out schedules of 12 more Indigo flights.

JetLite Bangalore-New Delhi flight schedule-
JetLite first flight no.0232 fly from Bangalore at 7.00AM and reaches in New Delhi at 9.40AM. This flight flies daily for the tourists. Last flight no.0236 take off from Bangalore at around 8.55PM and arrives in New Delhi at 11.30PM. This particular flight of JetLite flies on daily basis. Around 12 other flights are being scheduled by JetLite for the passengers. Booking them in advance will let you avail certain discounts.

You certainly need to get online to locate best of cheap flights for your Bangalore to New Delhi travel. Make your trip within your budget by booking affordable flights. A wide range of domestic airlines are available online. With a simple to understand online procedure, tourists can book suitable flights for self. Advance booking will reserve your seat with hassles to face later. A flight that suits your timings and budget is just a few clicks away.

Top 10 Inspiring Travel Books

This may not be your typical list of travel books but these books inspired me to pack my bags and visit distant lands.

Whenever you are in need of inspiration, you can pick any of these books up and get motivated to travel and explore all over again!

So here are my favourites!

Round Ireland With a Fridge by Tony Hawks

British comedian Tony Hawks takes a friend up on a bet to see if he can hitchhike around Ireland… with a fridge. The book not only inspires you to visit Ireland but also makes you fall in love with the Irish people and their quirky acceptance of just about anything… even a hitchhiker with a fridge.

Travels by Michael Crichton

The acclaimed author chronicles his travels as a young student as he battled the many challenges travellers today don’t have to contend with. His journey takes him up Kilimanjaro and around the world with both laughter and tears.

Eat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert

Before it was an inspiring movie this was an inspiring book. You can literally taste the delicious Italian food and feel the spirituality as the protagonist seeks “the meaning of life” on a journey through Italy, India and Bali. The book has great descriptions of the foods she tries and the cultures she encounters.

Pole to Pole by Michael Palin

I actually don’t remember which of Palin’s travel books I’ve read (I’ve read more than one) but they are all inspiring. This is the one I most clearly remember, as it inspired me to visit Tromso in Northern Norway. I love his style of writing, always with a bit of humor thrown in. He also has incredible TV travel programs, after he returns from the filming of each TV travel series he turns his adventures into a book.

Neither Here Nor There by Bill Bryson

This is just one of Bill Bryson’s entertaining travel books. It’s one of those books where you find yourself laughing out loud, even if you’re reading on the bus! The author has a hilarious sense of humor and always sees the funny side of foreign cultures and sites. Another of Bryson’s great books is Small Island which takes a quirky look at Britain.

The Sun Also Rises by Earnest Hemingway

I wonder how many travellers have gone to the Pamplona’s running of the bulls because of this book. I certainly would want to. Hemingway’s classic tale of the bullfighting aficionados conjured up the sounds, smells and spirit of this unique Spanish festival.

The Great Railway Bazaar by Paul Theroux

Having been forced to read Theroux’s The Mosquito Coast at university, which put me off ever travelling to Central America, I then discovered his other novels. Theroux travelled by train from the UK to Japan and his account of this journey became a classic travel book. His 4 month trip took him on many of the most famous rail routes in the world including the Trans-Siberian Railway. He went on to write other great train journey books.

Babette’s Feast by Isak Dinesen

OK so this isn’t an obvious travel book choice, as it focuses on food, but the setting and the delicious French food described in the book inspired me to visit Denmark. Babette arrives as a refugee in a remote village on Jutland, Denmark. 14 years later she wins the lottery and decides to spend all her winnings on preparing a French feast for the austere and modest community. Incredible French flavors and austere Danish landscapes seem like a world away.

Vagabonding by Rolf Potts

Veteran shoestring traveller Rolf Potts shows how anyone armed with an independent spirit can achieve the dream of extended overseas travel.

The book is about taking time off from your normal life-from six weeks to four months to two years-to discover and experience the world on your own terms.

Seven Years In Tibet by Heinrich Harrer

Originally published in 1953, this adventure classic recounts Austrian mountaineer Heinrich Harrer’s 1943 escape from a British internment camp in India, his daring trek across the Himalayas, and his happy sojourn in Tibet, then, as now, a remote land little visited by foreigners. Warmly welcomed, he eventually became tutor to the Dalai Lama, teenaged god-king of the theocratic nation.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/8294389

How to Travel With Books – Advantage and Disadvantage of Travel Books

Is it necessary to purchase a travel book or is it realistic that we can get similar information from other resources? Usually, most individuals have a major question on buying a travel book. So here are the pros and cons of purchasing one such book.

Advantages of a Travel Book

A travel book, which may be a paperback or e-book, comes in handy while traveling. Glancing through a travel book enables you to understand the custom and culture of a particular place in the world. So you can adapt yourself to that particular environment and stay there comfortably for longer periods.

They Come In Handy — The travel guide comes in various forms such as, e-books, paperbacks and the file formats. You can have easy access to these books, which would assist you with all details compatible to the region you are traveling to.
They Provide Enormous Information — Electronic or traditional travel guides provide you with answers to all types of questions such as how to learn some sayings that can be used in the place where you are traveling to? How to get data on where to reside, what to see and where to eat? How to get a clear knowledge about the history of a specific region or the atmosphere that it has?
They Suit To Your Requirements — To access full information about a specific country or a region, both types of general and specific travel books are made available. The e-book may easily fit into your e-book reader whereas the paperback can fit into your backpack.

Disadvantages of Travel Book

The Price — The e-book and paperback travel guides are very expensive compared to the information obtained from travel websites or from those who have moved or traveled to that region.
Qualitative Images In Travel Books — Most travel books are in black and white. Only a few e-books consist of colored photos. Hence make a thorough revision before purchasing a travel guide or an e-book.
Travel Books Make The Trip Less Natural — Traveling can be made more spontaneous by acquiring suggestions from locals than from travel books.

Conclusion

Considering travel books is essential while you are scheduling to travel. At the same time, never fail to revise the pros and cons in order to make the trip, the most memorable one.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/3056051

PriceCheck Tech & E-Commerce Awards winners announced

South African comparison website PriceCheck hosted its inaugural Tech & E-Commerce Awards on Thursday, 23 September 2016 at The Westin Cape Town. Along with celebrating the company’s 10th birthday, the Awards aimed to recognise and reward stellar tech and e-commerce businesses in South Africa – those that have stood the test of time and newcomers to the industry.
PriceCheck Tech & E-Commerce Awards winners announced
In addition to various category awards, was a People’s Choice Award – based solely on public opinion – and an Overall Winner as chosen by the judges. The judging panel comprised a number of industry veterans, spanning the realms of tech, business, digital, marketing and commerce.

They were: Alastair Tempest, director at Ecommerce Forum Africa; Lianne du Toit, vice chairperson of Silicon Cape; Matthew Buckland, CEO at Creative Spark; Geoff Cohen, co-founder of Delv Media; Lynette Hundermark, co-founder of Useful & Beautiful, Toby Shapshak, editor-in-chief and publisher of Stuff magazine, and Dirk Henke, managing director emerging markets at Criteo.

The country’s largest online retailer, Takealot.com, scooped the coveted Overall Winner award for the night, along with Best Customer Service and the People’s Choice Award. Zando also left smiling with two awards in tow, namely Best Mobile Shopping Experience and Best Overall Shopping Experience, while on-demand home cleaning startup SweepSouth and its co-founder Aisha Pandor took home the Best Black Tech/E-Commerce Entrepreneur and Best Female Tech/E-Commerce Entrepreneur category awards.

PriceCheck names finalists for Tech & E-Commerce Awards

PriceCheck, which provides an online product comparison tool, has named the finalists for its annual Tech & E-Commerce Awards. Culminating in a high profile awards evening, the judging process is marked by transparency and the independence of all involved.
Kevin Tucker
Kevin Tucker
“From start to finish, including the way in which the categories are defined, the votes counted, and the judges selected, the Awards offer up a uniquely unbiased and credible snapshot of what local etailers are up to,” says Kevin Tucker, founder and CEO, PriceCheck. “Our goal is to draw attention to the advances that individuals are making in what remains a challenging sector, both in South Africa and abroad.”

Finalists

Best Fintech Platform

Yoco
Zoona
wiGroup

Best Payment Service

SnapScan
Zapper
Peach Payments

Best Mobile Shopping Experience

Spree
Takealot
Zando

Best Overall Shopping Experience

Zando
Yuppiechef
Woolworths

Best Travel Booking Service

Kulula
Travelstart
SafariNow

Best On-Demand Service

WumDrop
Uber
SweepSouth

Best Online Financial Services Platform

Capitec
ABSA
FNB

Best Small Online Business

Domestly
Funky Tights
Nifty250

Best Online Classified Platform

OLX
Bidorbuy
Gumtree

Best Marketplace Platform

FlipSell
Bidorbuy
Takealot

Best Delivery / Logistics Provider

WumDrop
FedEx
DHL

Best Customer Service

Yuppiechef
Takealot
Zando

Best Black Tech / E-Commerce Entrepreneur

Livestock Wealth
SweepSouth

Best Female Tech / E-Commerce Entrepreneur

SweepSouth
Faithful to Nature

Employer of the Year

EOH
OneDayOnly
We Are Monsters

People’s Choice Award

Takealot
SnapScan
Uber

Overall Winner

Domestly
Groupon
Takealot

Judges

This year the awards have drawn a heavy-hitting list of judges, who bring with them diverse backgrounds, authority and experience across the technology, business, digital, marketing and commerce spheres. The seven judges are Alastair Tempest, Lianne du Toit, Matthew Buckland, Geoff Cohen, Lynette Hundermark, Toby Shapshak and Dirk Henke.

“All of the selected judges present a unique perspective of the industry and an independent point of view. We are thrilled to have such influential and credible personalities on board this year and look forward to seeing just how our local e-commerce entrepreneurs and innovators are faring in this fast-growing sector,” concludes Tucker.