Registering a growth of 3x compared to FY17, digital payments giant Paytm has recorded sale of 38 Mn travel tickets on its platform in FY18.
With a continued push towards consistent growth in its flights, trains, and bus ticketing categories, Paytm is aiming at 2x growth in ticketing volumes by end of FY19, with a target of becoming a dominant player in the online travel booking space.
Commenting on the development, Abhishek Rajan, vice-president, Paytm, said, “We are excited about the overwhelming response received over the past year. We believe our focus on solving customer needs and creating disruptive product experiences has played a crucial role in offering the confidence to book their travel online. This year, we plan to double our tech team as we continue to focus on building experiences that travellers love.”
In less than two years of its launch, Paytm has recorded a massive surge in bookings and claims to be emerging IRCTC’s largest reseller of train tickets, the second largest player for bus tickets, and among the top three sellers of flight tickets.
In a media statement, the company claimed that more than 85% of all travel bookings come from the app, and its travel offerings are vastly popular across the metros, mini metros, as well as tier II and III cities such as like Jaipur, Indore, Vizag, and Lucknow among others.
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It accredits this growth to Paytm’s product offerings like free cancellation that starts as low as INR 49 for Flights and INR 3 for Bus, zero processing fee on cancellation of flight tickets, and instant refunds among others.
Indian Online Travel Market
In the online travel segment, Paytm’s biggest competitor is are MakeMyTrip, ixigo, and Yatra, among others.
Recently, online travel company Yatra expressed its intention to raise $100 Mn capital in the next three years.
Prior to this, MakeMyTrip posted its results for the year ending December 2017 and recorded an overall revenue of $172.5 Mn, up 36% YoY from $123.2 Mn in the corresponding period of the previous fiscal year.
Due to increased expenses following MakeMyTrip’s merger with Ibibo Group, the Gurugram-headquartered online travel aggregator witnessed a jump in losses to $45.3 Mn in Q3 of FY18.
The country’s travel market (both offline and online) is expected to touch $48 Bn by 2020, according to a Google India-BCG report. As per an IBEF report, the online travel space will likely account for 40% to 50% of total transactions with 2020.
Paytm has already achieved a run rate of 1 Bn transactions per quarter, recording a four-fold jump in its annualised gross transaction value (GTV) to $20 Bn (INR 1.3 Lakh Cr) in March 2018.
With growth compounding figures along with innovating products, the company has been encashing on huge scalability proportions. The growth in the online travel market is just an example of how Paytm is ticking off multiple services on its platform, giving major players a run to improvise to retain its customers.