E-commerce giant Flipkart on Thursday announced that it was acquiring online travel aggregator Cleartrip. The Walmart-owned company did not disclose the acquisition amount. Cleartrip has been one of the most popular entities in India’s online travel space, and Twitter put up a befitting farewell to the original minds behind the company founded in 2006.
Acknowledging Cleartrip as one of the first to incorporate product design that focussed on enhancing customer experience, one user wrote, “This is an appreciation tweet for everyone who has been a part of the Cleartrip journey. From 2007, you showed us all what ‘product design’ and ‘product experience’ is when practically no one knew what magic it could do. Thank you for the inspiration.”
This is an appreciation tweet for everyone who has been a part of the @Cleartrip journey.
From 2007, you showed us all what ‘product design’ and ‘product experience’ is when practically no one knew what magic it could do. Thank you the inspiration ????
— pj (@BeingPractical) April 15, 2021
“I still keep referring to them for inspiration on product design,” added another user.
Indeed. I still keep referring them for inspiration on product design.
— Chirag “JOSH” Taneja (@tchirag) April 15, 2021
Seconding this, a user said, “Cannot agree more. They were pioneers in supreme user experience. On desktop and mobile. Thanks a lot for all the work everyone put in.”
Cannot agree more. They were pioneers in supreme user experience. On desktop and mobile. Thanks a lot for all the work everyone put in ????
— Bharath Devanathan (@bharathd) April 15, 2021
Some even thanked Cleartrip for being an inspiration.
Big reason why i am in product management. End of an era!
— Abhinav Agrawal (@arion5) April 15, 2021
+1, Thank you @hrushb @surdattack and entire @Cleartrip team. You inspired us ???? https://t.co/AfJHyuMaKJ
— Prashant Singh (@pacificleo) April 15, 2021
“Every time when someone criticised us for too much negative space on the website, we showed them Cleartrip. Thank you for showing us the path to good product design,” one of the messages read.
Everytime when someone criticised us for too much negative space on the website, we showed them @Cleartrip
Thank you for showing us the path to good product design. ???? https://t.co/z37QyG9QfI
— Ashwin (@_ashwinS) April 15, 2021
Many Cleartrip customers were also hoping that the design of the platform remains the same, post-acquisition.
For as long as I remember, I’ve booked flight tickets only on Cleartrip. From 2015 till the pandemic began: I was on a flight almost every month.
The only reason I preferred them: Design.
Hoping it doesn’t get killed! https://t.co/NfSXZ3foqX
— Bargava (@bargava) April 13, 2021
The ‘smooth booking experience’ was also something social media users appreciated.
IMO, cleartrip is one of the best travel site till date. No one could beat their UI and smooth booking experience.
14 years, Raised ~60 mil$, Getting sold for ~40mil$
Lesson: Business has to make money, having a great product is not enough. pic.twitter.com/IdZJKg1FEN
— Gagan Goyal (@Goyal4Gagan) April 14, 2021
Several users shared their experience with the company and tried throwing light on what could have gone wrong for them.
The first site I booked online flight tickets from. But haven’t used them directly in a long time. And swore to avoid them after terrible customer support for tickets booked via HDFC Smartbuy last year.
Goibibo, MMT, Yatra may still be behind in UI, but wins in price + support.
— Pallab De (@indyan) April 14, 2021
I also think possibly not solving the most pressing user problem. Great UI is fine but is this what people look for whole travelling? Or just best possible pricing?
— Himanshu Arora (@himanshuarora9) April 14, 2021
However, a majority of the comments chose to celebrate the brand. One customer said, “One of the most admired products.”
One of the most admired products! https://t.co/VSRxRBaRTL
— Nimit Kumar (@nimitkumar) April 16, 2021
Another added, “Been a superfan of Cleartrip since 2007! Thank you for the magic!”
Been a superfan of @Cleartrip since 2007! Thank you for the magic! https://t.co/1eWEcc8CZE
— Sanat (@hSanat) April 16, 2021
As per the terms of the agreement, though Flipkart will acquire all Cleartrip operations, it will continue to operate as a separate brand. The company’s employee base will also be retained, as per the agreement.
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