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Holyday Deals Search Service

The Best Holidays Search Service is an iPhone application that collects last-minute offers from Danish travel agencies and displays relevant deals to users. The offers can be filtered according to a number of parameters, such as departure date, vacation duration, and price. These custom searches can be saved and the application will send push notifications, when new similar offers appear.

The back-end part of the application collects data from specified resources on a schedule and updates this information 5 times a day. Users can share the deals they like on Facebook, send them via e-mail, or follow links to Web sites of travel companies. The Best Holidays Search Service already runs on iPhone and the version for Android is under development.

The customer is a startup founded by two entrepreneurs from Denmark. The company came to Altoros with an idea to deliver a mobile application that would help Danish users to find travel deals by various criteria. There was no detailed description of the future solution, so Altoros’s team had to make an estimate and prepare a specification for the product.

The application collects information from the Web sites of travel agencies. Third-party Web resources did not have a unified structure and used different technologies. Thus, the main challenge was to parse this information while preserving its structure, so that the application could recognize it.

To collect data from various Web sites, our team developed a parsing algorithm which is now used to collect the data. Also, some travel companies agreed to provide information on their deals in XML format.

The customer had a concept of the application but did not develop a strategy for its monetization. Altoros’s specialists offered to add some new features that would enable the customer to get revenue and pay off the app faster. We added two banners that display advertisements in search results. Also, a special Best Deal section with the most cost-efficient offers was created.

The customer was the first company in Denmark to deliver a mobile application that enables users to find last-minute travel deals. Soon, the application became very popular and was downloaded 55,000 times. More than 8,500 people use it regularly and the number of sessions has already exceeded 340,000.

Technology Stack

Server Platform

Ubuntu 12

Client Platform/Application Server

Tomcat 6.0

Technologies

Spring Framework 3.0.6

Programming Language

Java

Database

MySQL

Database Design Tool

MS Visio

Modeling Tool

MS Visio

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