Sean O'Neill

Sean O’Neill is our senior travel tech editor. He previously worked at Tnooz (now called Phocuswire), BBC Travel, Arthur Frommer's Budget Travel, and Kiplinger's. He lives in DC with his husband. Stop him before he starts another home improvement project.

Latest Stories

Startups

TravelX Raises $10 Million for Blockchain Tech: Travel Startup Funding This Week

This week, travel startups announced more than $115 million in funding. A few of the companies had very startup-y names such as Placemakr, TravelX, FutureStay, and Hoo.

TravelX Raises $10 Million for Blockchain Tech: Travel Startup Funding This Week

Tourism

Destinations Look Beyond Bad White-Label Tech to Drive Bookings Themselves

Destination marketers are skilled at helping travelers plan trips, but they're poor at encouraging transactions. Are they missing a trick by not driving more direct bookings and, thus, helping to level the playing field for the smallest travel suppliers?

Destinations Look Beyond Bad White-Label Tech to Drive Bookings Themselves

Startups

Nonius Acquires Hotel App Startup Criton

Who needs telephones in hotel guest rooms? Hotels can instead have guests make and receive calls via their mobile apps. That's one of the outcomes made possible by this acquisition of the vendor Criton by Nonius.

Nonius Acquires Hotel App Startup Criton

Travel Technology

Travel Tech Rollup Mondee Still Aims to Go Public Via $1 Billion Blank Check Deal

Interest in special-purpose acquisition companies, or SPACs, has fizzled. The sell-off in market silliness could mean that investing in a profitable leisure travel wholesaler like Mondee via a SPAC is no longer a high-risk calculation.

Travel Tech Rollup Mondee Still Aims to Go Public Via $1 Billion Blank Check Deal

Short-Term Rentals

Placemakr Raises $90 Million for Next-Gen Lodging Including Hotel Pop-Ups

What performs better financially than a hotel, on average? A hybrid model of lodging that mixes short-term and long-term stays, according to Placemakr. Is the startup genius? Or is it trying to do too much?

Placemakr Raises $90 Million for Next-Gen Lodging Including Hotel Pop-Ups

Short-Term Rentals

Short-Term Rentals Attract Private Equity Seeking New Asset Class

The smartest money appears to be warming to the emerging asset class of professionally managed short-term rentals and vacation rentals. But it's probably too soon to expect an "STR REIT," or short-term rental real estate investment trust, this year.

Short-Term Rentals Attract Private Equity Seeking New Asset Class

Short-Term Rentals

Private Equity Firm Alpine to Acquire AirDNA in Short-Term Rental Data Play

This deal is the second investment in two weeks in business intelligence for the short-term rental sector, coming after startup OTA Insight's purchase of Transparent. "Follow the data" is the new "follow the money."

Private Equity Firm Alpine to Acquire AirDNA in Short-Term Rental Data Play

Tourism

The Full List of Travel Companies Retreating From Russia

The list of companies taking a stand has grown considerably since Russia invaded Ukraine nearly three weeks ago. Here's our latest recap of travel's pullback from Russia.

The Full List of Travel Companies Retreating From Russia

Startups

Kevin Costner’s Road Trip Venture Gets Fresh Funds: Travel Startup Funding This Week

Actor Kevin Costner's travel startup, HearHere, is looking to seize on the rise in road trips. In other news, we've rarely seen a travel startup raise so much capital within a year of launching as Selfbook has for its hotel payments software.

Kevin Costner’s Road Trip Venture Gets Fresh Funds: Travel Startup Funding This Week

Travel Technology

How Much Hotel Tech Investment Is Just Way Too Much

Some hoteliers risk being overly ambitious in their tech efforts coming out of the pandemic.

How Much Hotel Tech Investment Is Just Way Too Much