In the latest dot-com pairing, b-there.com (www.b-there.com) is working with GetThere (www.getthere.com) to offer travel booking capabilities as part of the event registration Web sites it creates for meeting planner clients.
Menlo Park, Calif.-based GetThere's long-term goal is to offer travel reservations via direct connections with hotels and airlines; it now offers most reservations through its connections with the major global distribution systems (GDSs) such as Apollo, World-span, and Sabre (which at press time was still in the process of finalizing its purchase of GetThere).
According to Jim Forberg, vice president of strategic marketing for b-there.com in Westport, Conn., the two companies have been working on the agreement for about six months, mostly negotiating pricing. Organizations will pay a one-time setup fee of about $9,000 to incorporate GetThere's travel booking capabilities into event registration Web sites created by b-there.com. B-there.com will then charge a negotiated transaction fee for each air booking and pay a portion of it to GetThere.
Who pays that fee? "It depends on how the meeting planner wants to structure it," Forberg says. Passing the fee on to the attendee is one option; including the transaction costs in the event budget is another. For more on these companies, see "The Offline Guide to Online Tools" in TM's November/December issue.