A NEW Online Booking Engine Fit for the Decade


April 14, 2020

5 min read
Reading Time: 5 minutes

Yes—we’re living in a time of uncertainty. But it doesn’t all have to be doom and gloom. To help you stay positive, productive, and inspired during this period, we’d like to share some exciting product news & innovation to help brighten your day and drum up some ideas for when you’re assessing your technology stack and feature set during this period of downtime so that you’re in a good position for recovery.

To kick off the arrival of spring and all things new—we’re officially unveiling Zaui’s NEW Online Booking Engine, available to all Zaui customers and new users. 

Introducing a New Booking Experience

Thoughtful design has always been at the core of everything we do at Zaui. From the beginning—our founder, design, and engineering teams understood that providing an intuitive user experience that’s simple, clean, and easy-to-use is imperative to our customers’ success. 

So why update the booking engine? Well, our inspiration is you!

As we enter into a new decade, it was the perfect time to retire our old booking engine and hit refresh. We owed it to our customers to give the online booking engine the TLC (tender, love & care) it needed to take their business and bookings to new heights.


Last year we embarked on the refreshing journey, better known as OPERATION OBE REFRESH with the goal of making the booking flow and customer redemption process even more frictionless for guests.

A large part of this refresh required our team to step into our customers’ shoes and leverage insights gathered from guests’ booking to how they discover your experiences and the redemption and check-in process while in the destination. We’ve also taken into consideration the agent and partner experience, incorporating features to help further improve partnerships and processes.

To fully inform our next-gen booking engine’s design and strategy, we tapped into industry and user insights, compiling conversion data and conducting additional research on the traveller’s journey.

Inspired by the traveller’s booking journey, Zaui’s Online Booking Engine’s NEW user interface is designed to simplify and drive direct online bookings.

Speed equals revenue: 53% of mobile visitors will abandon a page if the site takes over 3 seconds to load. So it’s no surprise that speed is a critical blocker to a traveller’s path to purchase and the number one culprit in low conversion rates and high cart abandonment. The average eCommerce conversion rate for the travel industry stands at 0.7%, well below other sectors signifying a huge opportunity for improvement.

While Zaui’s legacy booking engine’s conversion rates have historically ranked well above industry average, it was still important for us to help our customers continue delivering engaging, lightning-fast experiences within an increasingly mobile world. We decided to give the booking engine the extra torque it needed to accommodate every thinkable tour, activity and transportation scenarios whether it be in-destination bookings, service disruptions or even bookings through social integration – you name it, we‘ve mapped it! 

You’re sure to notice the visual changes, don’t miss out on the rich features powering the NEW booking engine and elevating the guest experience.

⚡️What’s NEW with Online Booking Engine and Why it Matters


  • User-friendly design:  Simple, clutter-free interface improves on design, usability and accessibility to keep the booking process streamlined, so guests remain on-site and ready to complete their bookings in a few clicks.
  • Lighting fast: It’s 2020 and delivering the fastest possible booking experience is not optional. Dialled for speed and conversions, the new online booking engine addresses barriers previously deterring travellers from completing their purchases.
  • Easy same day, in-destination bookings: With almost half of the experience bookings—48% booking from mobile while in-destination, it’s more important than ever to develop tools for travellers on the go. Optimized for mobile, our new quick-view availability calendar is great for guests making last-minute in-destination bookings and for operators looking to access and retrieve the next available time slot, saving on time and scroll through.
  • Easy payouts:  Take the headache out of payouts with the agent and wholesale bookings! By sharing the direct affiliate link to the NEW online booking engine with your commission (travel agents, hotel concierge) or wholesale partners, commissions will be auto-applied upon checkout, ensuring your partners are properly compensated.
  • Global experience: Built-in multi-currency and localization features makes the process seamless for global customers opting to book in their preferred language and home currency (multi-currency support is dependent on your payment gateway)*
  • Secure & reliable: Your booking engine is tied to your revenue and guest experience. It was crucial for our team to maintain the uptime of your direct booking channel.

📈Take Advantage of Zaui’s Best In Class Booking Engine Features

NEW Online Booking Engine Feature: Category View

  1. Theming tool & visual decorators: Pick from ready-to-go colour schemes and fonts that align with your branding without the worry of entangling your team with CSS edits and over customization. Other design details such as visual decorators and alerts help highlight features such as remaining seats available, meal stops, bathrooms, wifi inclusions, in addition to flagging service disruptions for an enhanced guest experience.
  2. Embedding options – Embed your booking engine where you want it, how you want it. The NEW Online Booking Engine offers flexibility in how you’d like to host your booking engine. Choose from a range of methods such as Embedded Button Overlay (Iframe), Button (Redirect to a separate page), or a Direct Link (Dedicated link for resharing with the commission and wholesale agents).
  3. Facebook booking integrations:  Accept more bookings from your social channel. Similar to the legacy booking engine, our Facebook booking integration links your company’s social profile to the NEW online booking engine, allowing guests interacting on social to book directly off your Facebook page.
  4. Category view: Activities, packages and products are grouped and displayed in the Category view. Guests are able to easily select from multiple tours and activities based on their interests and search terms.
  5. Pricing table and routes: Our NEW pricing table offers both operators and guests clear pricing and point-to-point routes—a must-have and competitive advantage for Transportation operators.
  6. Upselling revenue: The average booking cart sits at $150 USD.  We’ve incorporated upsell and cross-sell features to help you sell more and up their average transaction and further drive your revenues. Complimentary tours and products are clearly displayed, offering more opportunities for guests to discover add ons to further enhance their travel experience.


We think of today’s release as OBE 1.0—our first take on the future of direct bookings. There’s still room for improvement, and we don’t plan on slowing down anytime soon. These changes pave the way to continually build and innovate moving forward. 

Our product roadmap also includes countless plans to improve the customer journey and user experience – from editing bookings to enhanced language and currency features, there’s plenty more in the works. Please continue to share your feedback on how we can make the Zaui experience even better.

Ready to take your booking engine to the next level? Schedule a demo with a Zaui expert TODAY!

For Zaui customers looking to make the switch over to the new Online Booking Engine, connect with your customer success manager Today

* Multi-currency processing must be supported by your payment gateway. Speak to your Zaui Customer Success Manager for information and a list of compatible gateways.

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