NEW MEDIA: Airtours in trial for digital drive

Package holiday company Airtours is testing electronic brochures with a view to putting them on a digital TV channel.

Package holiday company Airtours is testing electronic brochures

with a view to putting them on a digital TV channel.



The firm is considering launching interactive and downloadable versions

of its brochures, which could then be carried on TV, the internet or

both.



The internet is already full of travel sites, but a major holiday firm

like Airtours could bring greater branding and a more sophisticated

service.



It could also launch its own TV channel selling holidays and

broadcasting general travel programmes.



Airtours’ travel agency chain, Going Places, is also thought to be

planning its first dive into digital, with a place on cable firm NTL’s

service.



Airtours has already established a presence on the internet, via a

Planet Online site. ’This is part of a wider study we are conducting

into how people access travel products,’ said Eammon Ferrin, head of

marketing.



Ferrin is wary of jumping in with one digital operator. ’There would be

such a heavy investment in this that we prefer to stand back and see

which consortium comes out best,’ he said.



The greatest contest is likely to be between the Granada/Carlton-backed

ONdigital and BSkyB’s service, which launches today (Thursday).