90di travel search blog

Posts Tagged ‘trains’

1021789

Friday, June 15th, 2012

Yes, 1,021,789! That’s the number of travel searches you did, dear users, on 90di.com in the last month.

We are ecstatic to reach the million search mark. And thank you all all for it. We love you for it. And hope that you celebrate with us, by doing more searches on 90di.com, and by spreading the word about us to your family and friends.

We believe in our model, and think its the best model to exist for travel bookings using the Internet.

We would also like to thank our partner Airlines on this occasion.

Indian Railways, we would request you to help us more, by being open. Give everybody an API. It will allow innovation to happen in this field. And people will love you more. Also allow us to make some commercial use of it.

Our Bus partners, we thank you.

Also open source software communities, we love you. We thank:

1. Linux: Where we develop, host and run our stuff.

2. Java and its eco system with lots of other open source libraries, created by the erstwhile Sun. Oracle, please-please don’t screw it up.

3. Apache web server – You never crashed in some 4/5 years of run! Need anything be said in your praise. We love you.

4. Tomcat and Jetty: We have used both of them, in various mixes at various times.

5. GWT: Thanks Google and GWT team for building such a cool piece of software. That said, the roadmap does look uncertain, and we will be forced to move to JQuery, or such, if you don’t dispel the doubts with actions in terms of some solid releases.

6. Demo Recorder: Its a brilliant piece of software to record stuff on linux. And it has helped us saved the day, during one presentation, when Internet connection died.

7. libevent: In our experience, libevent provides an excellent base to serve requests, if you want to code in C/C++, with perhaps 1/3rd the memory requirements of Java and twice as fast.

8. Eclipse: The IDE we use to generate our Java code.

9. vi: The best editor in the world, if you conquer it. For those, who have not had the pleasure of using it – Its the editor for coding C++, and shell scripts, and what not!

10. Memcached: The fastest way to cache some objects, and any thing. With the lowest possible memory & CPU footprint.

11. subversion(svn): For help managing our source code control (I know, I know, some people might say “You are not on ‘XYZ’ yet!”. The answer would be ‘will the change the shoe if it pinches me some where, not because some celebrity said, it pinched him!’)

12. MySQL: The best open source RDBMS, in the world.

Also, although not open source, we would like to thank Amazon AWS, for providing the best cloud services in the world. Which allows guerilla fighters, to more effectively compete with the corporates with armies!

Travel Search actually saves you money, and more …

Monday, June 27th, 2011

The inspiration for this post is, some of the feedback, we got on our facebook page recently regarding savings some travellers, were able to make while using us to find the best flight/train and booking directly (at Airline or Railways site).

One user was able to save Rs. 2018/-. Where as another found a flight for 3.5K on our site, where as some of the big Online Travel Agents (OTA) were showing it for much-much higher!

We also did a post explaining our travel search model some time back. Here is a fresh take on it:

  1. Internet is about removing redundancies, and also superficial intermediaries. And that is primarily by virtue of making the information flow, easily possible, between entities (peoples & systems).
  2. In an ideal scenario, on the Internet, when user wants to book a flight, information from all the Airlines should just flow into the user’s tool (computer/any thing), without any intermediary. There is a seller there is a buyer. The two kinds are sufficient for the trade to happen. And both need each other. Every thing else, can be dispensed with, if not helping the trade, by adding value.
  3. Let’s say for the moment, that no intermediary exists, whether its the OTAs, or travel search engines like 90di. This removes the intermediaries, but then what happens is: User has has to open 10 tabs in the browser, one for each Airline, and one perhaps for IRCTC. So it will be kind of painful for the user.
  4. So basically, some kind of tool is required to make the travel booking process easier. To assist and assimilate the flow of travel information.
  5. But the question is where should the tool stop – meaning what all features it should not have. If it goes on to do booking on behalf of the user, and by that it adds to the cost of travel – hefty commissions; and the double cancellation charges (one to the Airline and one to the OTA). And thereby starting to drain the travel booking eco-system.
  6. More over, Airlines can’t pass on some of the advantages to consumer as part of the booking – For example purchasing food at the time of booking. This particular aspect is a lose-lose proposition for both the Airlines and the traveller. As user is constrained by the limitations of the “generic-for-all-Airlines” features provided by the OTA. And the Airline can’t ‘demonstrate’ more value to the consumer upfront.
  7. So it seems obvious to us, and hopefully to many of you reading this, that travel search engines are the kind of tools you need for travel planning, and nothing more. Anything more – like the booking – and the tool starts to come in your way.

We are glad to be of value to our users. And although, there are some difficulties(+), we try and continue, in the belief, that we are instrumental in the travel search model getting established in India. Which, we believe, is in the best interests of both the suppliers (like Indian Railways and Airlines) and, equally if not more important, for the consumer. We didn’t just say it when we said ‘We are on the traveller’s side’!

 

+ Difficulties like not getting paid by all the Airlines yet — it’s taking some time. And not making anything on the trains’ search – Indian Railways does not yet support the travel search model (although we are hopeful, and have been patiently following up with them). But there are silver lines. Big Thanks to the Airlines that pay us, we are able to keep ourselves motivated and, which reinforces our belief in this model.

microreviews.org reviews 90di; interviews me – Thanks to twitter!

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009

Heard that @Infosys recently closed a deal on Twitter? @90di got a review and interview done.  Thanks to twitter.

Arkid Mitra from microreviews.org contacted 90di.com on twitter for an interview as part of their new series “start-up reviews and interviews”.  The interview was conducted on the same day. The very next day they published it. You can read the full article on microreviews.org.

They have done a wonderful job by doing a comprehensive review of 90di.com. There have pointed out some of the shortcomings of 90di. We need these kind of reviews and feedback. We will address these points.

But couple of things we wanted to clarify:

  • Mumbai to Nazira: Yes we do not show routes from Mumbai to Nazira. But we do ‘Near Search’ for this. Nazira doesn’t have Train or Flight connectivity. So we give options where users can choose a ‘big place’ near to Nazira. This list includes Dibrugarh. So if user chooses Dibrugarh, we show routes from Mumbai to Dibrugarh.
  • Mumbai to Jammu via Lucknow: 90di understands this query as the user wants routes between Mumbai and Jammu which passes through Lucknow. Since there are direct Train/Flights available between Mumbai and Jammu, we show the direct routes first. We also show the routes which have transit at Lucknow. But we agree that  in order to not confuse the user, we can remove the direct routes (being extra nice can confuse the user 🙂 just give him what he wants)

Thanks again to Arkid and microreviews.org folks for doing an effort review. All the best for your site folks!

Showing the train availability for next 5 days

Friday, June 26th, 2009

If you are checking for train availability on 90di.com, you will now get the availability details for 6 days in one single click. Once you click “get availability” link, we will show the availability for that particular date and a link for remaining 5 days availability.

Thanks for the feedback. They really help us to improve.

The following screen shots explain this feature.

before clicking the availability link

before clicking the availability link

availability details - shows link to next 5 days availability

availability details - shows link to next 5 days availability

next 5 days availability details

next 5 days availability details

Mail based search – now get search results in your inbox!

Friday, June 19th, 2009

We have launched mail based search feature on 90di, wherin you can send your travel search queries in subject field of email to the emailID 90di.com@gmail.com and you will get your search result in your inbox within minutes.

Search query should be normal free text based search query. For example if you want to find flight fares between Mumbai and Delhi on next Friday, you can send an email with suject Mumbai to Delhi by flight next friday and you will get the results in your inbox.

Along with the booking link tele booking numbers of all the airlines are provided so that you can call the airines directly and book your ticket.

For train availability, just start your query with keyword “AVL” and provide all the required information. For example for availability for train number 1014 between Bangalore and Mumbai your query should be AVL train 1014 SBC to LTT on 07/Jul/2009 2A

Try it out and let us know your thoughts! 🙂

90di has got a new look for its results page

Friday, April 3rd, 2009

Bored looking at the same existing ui?

Here is a new and fresh look and feel for our search results page.

We have tried to show the results in more user friendly manner.

We have avoided the repetitions (The departure and arrival times used to repeat). In routes which involve at least one change-over, we are now showing the wait time at the transit station.

Along with this we have made some changes to how we get the routes. We now fetch the routes on demand. If you search from Bangalore to Mumbai, initially we show you the train routes. We get the flight routes only if you are interested in it, i.e, if you click on Flights tab. This applies to Bus and Train+Flight routes also. With this we have avoided loading your browser with routes which you don’t want.

Try it out and tell us what you feel about our new UI.

Please see the below images to understand the changes. The images on the left hand side are of the old UI and those on the right hand side are of the new UI.

Flight view in old version

Flight view in old version

Flight view in new version

Flight view in new version

Train view in old version

Train view in old version

Train view in new version

Train view in new version

Bus view in old version

Bus view in old version

Bus view in new version

Bus view in new version

Train+Flight view in old version

Train+Flight view in old version

Train+Flight view in new version

Train+Flight view in new version

Availability for direct Flights and Trains between given two places

Thursday, December 4th, 2008

We have earlier added the functionality to find all the direct flights and trains between two places. We have enhanced this by providing the check availability feature.

For example, when you search for mumbai to kolkata you will get a list of trains and flights.

flights & trains between Mumbai and Kolkata

Now you can click on “Get Availability” link. You need to specify the departing station, arriving station, date and travel class (for trains).

Getting availability for train

Then we will get the availability for that train/fight.

Availability details for train

You can book the trains either at ClearTrip or at IRCTC.

We take you the home page of IRCTC, as you need to log in before doing anything.

But, for ClearTrip, we take you the page where all the details are pre-populated.