Travolution Awards 2011 at the Roundhouse, London – photo by Steve Dunlop
The best of the UK online travel industry were celebrated last night at the annual Travolution Awards 2011, marking the publication’s fifth birthday.
The event, held at the iconic music venue the Roundhouse in Camden, saw a number of multiple winners including Skyscanner, British Airways, Isango!, Teletext Holidays, Tripadvisor and Laterooms.
The evening ended with a Travolution Achievement award for the founders of the Lonely Planet travel guides Maureen and Tony Wheeler, who sent a video message from his home in Melbourne.
The awards were hosted by BCC radio DJ Mark Radcliffe and featured performances from unsigned musicians including beatboxer Faith SFX and Raphaella, a member of the Roundhouse emerging artist programme.
The night’s chosen charity was Families of the Fallen, whose chairman and co-founder, the newscaster Martyn Lewis CBE was a guest of honour.
For the second year running the awards included six accolades voted for by consumers in a category of awards sponsored by Teletext Holidays.
Winners included Laterooms.com, Virgin Atlantic, Expedia.co.uk, P&O Cruises and TripAdvisor. Teletext Holidays’ relaunch also earned it a double, scooping the best Cross-Media Advertising Campaign and the Rising Brand of the Year awards.
One of the big winners of the night was flights meta-search site Skyscanner, which won the awards for best meta-search site, the best use of SEO having won the judges over in this live pitch category and being named Travel Brand of the Year.
Each year the Travolution Awards looks to honour the innovative spirit of the online travel industry and this year the founders of travel information website RedVisitor Kim McLoughlin and Enrique Nalda were named Pioneer of the Year having also taken the Best Travel Information Website.
Travolution editor Lee Hayhurst said: “The awards and the summit ensured we marked the fact that Travolution has been covering the online travel sector for five years in some style.
“Having taken the decision to move the awards away from its traditional home in Park Lane last year to Battersea Power Station, they moved up yet another notch this year with The Roundhouse proving to be an extremely popular venue.
“Many thanks to everyone who attended the event and a big congratulations to all the winners and all those who made the shortlists, plus thank you to our judges who had the unenviable task of choosing the winners.”
Judging for the awards took place in July and August with finalists in the SEO and Website Design categories facing a Dragon’s Den style judging process at the Roundhouse.
Best Use of Social Media
MyIrish140, Tourism Ireland
Highly commeded: Virgin’s social snow
Best Use of Search Engine Optimisation
Highly commended: Steak for Virgin Holidays
Best Use of Affiliate Marketing
Commission Junction for TUI
Best Agency for Website Design
NVG and Absolute Media for golakes.co.uk
Highly commended: Yucca for Park Resorts
Best Cross-Media Advertising Campaign
Repositioning the Brand, Teletext Holidays
Best Meta Search/Price Comparison Website
Best Travel Information Website
Best Technology Provider
Highly commeded: Web Applications UK
Best Online/Desktop Application
Digital Visitor’s Visitor Review
Best Mobile Application
ebookers Explorer iPad app
Best Agent-Only Website
Best Tour Operator-Only Website
Highly commended: AudleyTravel.com
Best Accommodation-Only Website – consumer-facing
Highly commended: Farm and Cottage Holidays
Best Trade-Only Website
Highly commended: Lowcostbeds
Best Cruise Retail Website
Best Airline Website
Best Hotel Website
Highly commeded: The Goring
Best Car Hire Website
Best Cruise Line Website
Best Attraction Website
Rising Star of the Year
Deepak Jha, Isango.com
Rising Brand of the Year
Travel Brand of the Year
Travel Pioneer of the Year
Travolution Achievement Award
Lonely Planet founders, Maureen and Tony Wheeler
Best Hotel Website – Laterooms.com
Best Airline Website – Virgin Atlantic
Best Holiday Booking Website – Expedia.co.uk
Best Cruise Website – P&O Cruises
Best Travel Blog – TripAdvisor
Best Travel App -TripAdvisor