TransferTravel.com is a peer-to-peer marketplace. This means that every listing you see on our website is put by there by another person — a bit like an eBay for travel. We are facilitators rather than sellers which means your transaction is with an individual, not a business. Of course, this raises some questions for many people about digital trust, which we hope to answer for you.
Can I Trust TransferTravel?
You can, and that’s not just coming from us. Sharing Economy UK awarded us the TrustSeal in October 2018 which is a respected kitemark to indicate that we uphold a high standard of practice within the sharing economy. In other words, we make sure that important factors like transparency, security and customer support is at the centre of everything we do.
We want to make sure that you feel safe when you use our site, from the sign-up page to the final transfer. This starts with our users.
First of all, they are all real people. No bots and no companies trying to resell bookings as you see with some event ticket marketplaces. Most of our customers connect their social media accounts to their TransferTravel account so you can be reassured that they are legitimate.
The reason people list in the marketplace in the first place is because they’ve got a non-refundable booking they can’t use anymore. It’s usually because of an unfortunate situation like a breakup or medical complication which prevents them from being able to use their travel plans. Someone can’t buy a cheap flight to then just sell it for a higher price on our site. Our users aren’t here to make a profit; they’re trying to make some of their money back from hundreds, if not thousands, of pounds worth of unused travel bookings.
Transparency isn’t just about identity verification and being genuine. Cost is a huge deciding factor when it comes to choosing where and when you’ll travel, so there’s nothing worse than feeling like you’ve been cheated.
On TransferTravel.com, listings aren’t posted in the marketplace if they are more than the price the seller originally paid. For instance, a seller might be putting a return flight from London Gatwick to Barcelona up for sale which cost them £150. They will have to set the price at £150 or less, unless they decide to add the name change fee to their listing price. We encourage all sellers when they first make their listing to offer a 30% discount as well so you know that you’ll never be charged more than you should. This is because we believe in the what you see is what you pay policy. Any additional charges like luggage and in-flight meals are stated in the description of the listing, so you know exactly what is included in the booking.
Anyone attempting to sell their listing at more than face value is trying to make a profit, which isn’t what the TransferTravel community is about.
We know that sometimes people aren’t as genuine as they first seem so we’re not just relying on their word. To create an environment of mutual trust between our buyers and sellers, we have a secure payment platform which ensures that if they are dishonest, you don’t lose out.
When a transfer is agreed, the buyer pays and we hold the money until they use the booking. This is to benefit both sides; if the buyer was to pay when the transfer of documents are made rather than beforehand, they could pull out of the transaction or fail to pay the full price. On the other side, if the seller doesn’t make the name change or upload the documents within the 72-hour period, then the money is refunded to the buyer.
Normalising the marketplace
Marketplaces aren’t a new concept. They’ve been around much longer than any budget airline or package holiday (a bit of an understatement, we know). However, people seem more willing to trust a big company than an individual. That doesn’t make sense to us. If you have a bad experience with a corporation, it doesn’t matter to them because you’re just a drop in their ocean. With a peer-to-peer marketplace, the stakes are so much higher for the individual who’s selling their travel plans as it all rests on their shoulders. This means that your experience is more personal, tailored to you and better quality. Peers in a marketplace need to create a community rather than a mutual distrust in order to succeed - and when they do, it’s better than what any OTA has to offer.
Things are starting to shift as the marketplace model is normalised by more and more sharing economy businesses. If you’re willing to stay in stranger’s bed and ride in a stranger’s car, then why not buy and use second-hand travel plans? Since our users never come face-to-face, the risks that come with a room rental or lift share don’t apply; all you’re using is a perfectly good booking that would otherwise have been wasted.
Improving the marketplace experience
Let’s take it back to basics. When you start looking for a holiday, you’re looking for three things above all else:
This means that you want:
- An easy booking process, and a plethora of options for when and where you go.
- A price you feel matches the quality of the place you’re going, plus feeling like you got a good discount because it always seems better than paying full price.
- A booking which will be honoured, and the knowledge that there won’t be any nasty surprises when you get to your destination.
It’s not like this is a big ask. In fact, this should be a baseline requirement for every single booking. And yet, everyone has had a bad vacation experience at some point, whether that’s with poor customer service from an airline or a villa that looks more derelict than desirable. Sometimes you find that the booking process requires the name of your first cat just to sign up for an account, or the person on the sun lounger next to you paid half the price for the same vacation. It happens and it doesn’t seem to surprise us anymore when it does.
We’re taking a stand against this. Travel is such a valuable and important experience which we think everyone should be able to enjoy. That’s why we are continuously improving the TransferTravel.com website to make sure that:
- Our ‘Buy Now’ and ‘Make An Offer’ process is simple and easy
- There are always amazing and diverse listings promoted on our social media so you have a huge range of travel plans to pick from
- A price that is the same as or less than the original price our sellers paid. Nothing is sold for more than it cost in the first place
- A secure payment process which means that in the unlikely event that something goes wrong during the transfer, your money is safe and will be refunded to you
Our dedication to improving the trust, transparency and security of TransferTravel is creating an incredible community of travellers who are showing that travel isn’t just about getting the best deal, but helping someone else out in the process.