MSN Travel Embarks Again

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The newly relaunched travel portal from MSN will be available as a beta version as the portal tests out a similar look-and-feel to Windows Live and several new content providers.

MSN has embraced the concept of the white background again with its latest site relaunch. The MSN Travel site displays an Expedia tabbed window module to search through various travel options from the main page, and a number of links to destination guides for popular destinations.

Microsoft listed several content providers who will deliver new and updated travel information to MSN Travel. One notable contributor is Dorling Kindersley Publishing, known for its lavishly designed travel guides that contain lots of high-quality photographs of destinations. Frommer’s, Travel + Leisure, and Associated Press are among the content providers.

MSN Travel has the goal of becoming a one-stop travel destination. In a survey MSN commissioned with Harris Interactive, nearly three-quarters of respondents noted they visit three or more websites when planning or booking vacation plans.

To get there, MSN Travel will have to bulk up the number of travel guides available. Only a handful of city destination articles for North America and Europe are online at MSN Travel currently. As the site is in beta, we expect to see that number increase.

One item of note for those interested in advertising: MSN does not seem to be using adCenter to place the ads appearing on the travel site. Ads from Doubleclick and Atlas show up on MSN Travel as of press time, but no adCenter or Overture ads, either.

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David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business.

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