Going from "you're fired" to "you're flying," Donald Trump had become the face of the newest online portal. GoTrump.com, powered by Sabre's
Even though the 60,000 hotel offerings at GoTrump.com are essentially the same ones you'd find at Travelocity.com, Trump's site also emphasizes exotic vacation packages, along with Trump's favorite hotel picks in key cities. (The abundance of Ritz-Carlton selections, however, may lead one to question that feature's genuineness.)
Online travel has become an $80 billion business, but it's also becoming an awfully cookie-cutter type of affair these days. Even the once-edgy Priceline.com
Though they may not sense trouble at the moment, top online bookers such as Sabre and Expedia
It's bad enough that the online portals are now usually charging more than if you were to simply book directly through an air carrier of your choice; the largest portals are tacking on $5 transaction fees. You also have low-cost carriers, often excluded from portal travel listings, that now go directly to the customer with creative deals, like Southwest's
Meanwhile, Trump's travel venture, like the rest of his non-gaming empire, is not part of the publicly traded Trump Entertainment Resorts
It won't be easy for that to happen. Third-party travel sites are plentiful. For years, IAC/Interactive
I realize that's not going too far out on a limb. But if I did have to travel out onto that limb, I'm not sure I'd book plans to get there throough GoTrump.com.
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz still relies on the portals to get basic travel information, but then he runs off to see whether better deals can be had directly through the provider. He does not own shares in any of the companies in this story. The Fool has a disclosure policy. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.