I had wondered in my earlier post how the TripIt technology would go about "reading" all of the different forms of confirmation emails (especially pdfs) that travel companies send.
I conducted a test by sending through to the TripIt mail all the details from a recent trip to Melbourne made up of a Virginblue flight voucher, RatesToGo.com hotel voucher and Melbourne Skybus airport transfer ticket.
Unfortunately, the common response to each of these three emails to TripIt was
We received your email (Subject Line: [whatever the booking was]) but had a problem processing it. This typically happens when your email is not from one of our currently supported booking sites or when your TripIt To Me text isn't in the right format (for help with TripIt To Me, send an email with a blank subject line and the word "help" in the body to firstname.lastname@example.org and we'll respond with a list of available commands).Not a great first time user experience. It is clear that the confirmation information has to be in a very set format or from the list of supported vendors. There is a good number of companies on the supported list (here) including biggies Expedia, Orbitz, Travelocity and Priceline as well as major airlines and leading LCCs such as easyJet and Ryanair. However there also a lot of well known brands missing such as lastminute.com, Accor.com, Qantas, Booking.com, HotelClub.com and Venere.com.
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The TripIt Team
The site is still in beta so there is reason to be forgiving. However customers give very few second changes to content/mashup based websites - even those in beta. My conclusion therefore remains the same - great idea but the execution needs to be flawless for the business to work. That is a big ask for any travel start up, even a well funded one. Anyone else have a TripIt experience to share?