Hotel Quickly, one of Asia’s most popular last minute booking apps, has launched in New Zealand, with plans to disrupt the online hotel booking market – and secure Kiwi 100,000 users by year end.
The app has launched locally with 407 three- to five-star hotels across 17 New Zealand cities. HotelQuickly expects to have 600 hotel partners by the end of the year.
The Hong Kong based company has experienced rapid expansion across Asia and says New Zealand has been identified as a key market in its plans to become the dominant player in Asia Pacific.
Christian Mischler, HotelQuickly CMO and co-founder, says the New Zealand market, with 83% of Kiwis now using smartphones, offers ‘great potential’ for apps like HotelQuickly.
“Travel patterns have been shifting from pre-booking trips and holidays towards last-minute bookings for spontaneous holidays,” Mischler says.
“Cost pressures in both work and leisure are impacting customer choices, people are constantly seeking the value that HotelQuickly can offer.”
Services such as travel account for the largest category of expenditure via mobile devices in New Zealand, with an estimated $2.2 billion spent on services in 2014 according to Frost & Sullivan’s New Zealand Mobile Commerce Market 2014 report.
“The increased use of smartphones is changing the way consumers make purchase decisions, the immediacy of mobile encourages impulse purchasing, especially when large discounts are offered,” Mischler says.
He’s predicting fast adoption of the mobile app in New Zealand with the company expecting the New Zealand user base to hit 100,000 by the end of 2015. About one million users globally have downloaded the app.
Mischler says the mobile-only offering enables booking with just a few taps and carefully curates hotel offerings to ensure only the best deals in a given location are shown.
“Our application acts like a private sales channel for hotels to sell off distressed inventory and bring up their occupancy,” he says.
“Hotels are happy to grant big discounts for these rooms that would otherwise go unsold. This creates a win-win situation for hotels and guests: hotels get additional revenue, guests get fantastic deals at great hotels.”
The company recently raised US$4.5 million in a funding round and Mischler says it plans to double its current footprint of 100 locations by year end.