December 9, 2015
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There are many ways to travel and experience new places, and it doesn't always have to include impersonal and expensive hotels. Imagine having your own warm, more personal space when you travel; a home away from home that cuts travel costs as well. This is the concept behind 9Flats. It's a service that connects those who have a room, apartment or house to rent with those looking for more personal, affordable, alternative accommodation. The 9Flats API makes this functionality available to third party developers who may want to integrate it with other applications.
If there is a segment that is ripe for integration it is travel. APIs in the travel segment have been around for a very long time. In fact, some of the earliest APIs are based on Electronic Data Interchange, which dates back to the 1960s. Granted many of these connections are highly complex enterprise only integrations, it is a history that should bode well for modern day integrations, should it not? Despite a long history of interconnectedness, much of the travel space still remains behind closed doors. The major global distribution systems, represented by Sabre, Travelport, and Amadeus all offer powerful APIs of their own, but their commercial requirements tend to be out of the league of most application developers. In spite of the limitations the travel industry has effectively self imposed, there still exists many opportunities to monetize sites using travel APIs. There are several types of APIs available in the travel space. Most are transactional and some are content driven. Let's take a look a broad categorization of available travel APIs.
At the beginning of the year we were wondering "how many newspapers have an API". Now it is at least one more, and even more exciting - it is an international one! DIE ZEIT, the market leader among Germany’s weekly newspapers, is entering the API world by launching the beta phase of its ZEIT ONLINE Content API.