Rome2rio announced today the launch of its Advance Booking Alert function, aimed at ensuring travelers are fully informed when transport operators require or recommend advance reservations for their services. The Rome2rio site now displays an alert alongside schedules that indicates whether advance bookings are compulsory, recommended, or not required. We believe we are the first online service to display this information on a global basis.
“Do I need to book this in advance?” is among the most common questions asked by our seven million monthly users. Having discovered, for example, that there’s a frequent TGV service from Turin to Paris, travelers then wonder if they should book ahead of time, or take a chance and buy their ticket at the station. As advance bookings are mandatory for the TGV, we want to make that completely clear.
Advance booking advisories ensure you’re not left waiting on the platform
On the other hand, many operators do not require mandatory advance bookings, and in these cases travelers are prone to assume that they’ll find a seat at the last minute. That’s often not true, and in those cases we’ll display messaging that says an advance booking is recommended. Inter-city trains in France, Italy and Germany, Amtrak and Megabus services in the US, many Russian trains and peak-season Mediterranean ferry services are all good examples, but the list certainly doesn’t stop there .
Rome2rio is working with transport operators to collect data on advance booking requirements. Many operators, particularly in Europe, flag services that require advance bookings in their schedule data feeds, however in other cases the company will work directly with operators to collect the information. Eventually, advance booking information will be displayed for the majority of the almost 5,000 train, bus and ferry operators displayed on the site.