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New Travel Website: The Focus Is Video

NEWS RELEASE: , Sunday January 27

New Travel Website: The Focus Is Video

A unique travel website launches today (Monday, January 28th), offering consumers a free and easy guide to overseas holiday destinations and accommodation.

Auckland-based travel video specialists Look Before You Book(tm) have developed an online Video Travel Planner offering an unrivalled range of travel services.

The new Look Before You Book(tm) website www.lbyb.co.nz is a one-stop shop for travel to and within the Asia Pacific region. It allows consumers to view and book a complete holiday package on the Internet.

The new service is New Zealand's first travel website to focus on streaming video. It is designed for the growing broadband (high-speed) market. Text options are also available for users who have slower connections.

At the click of a button, consumers are able to watch guided tours of overseas hotels and attractions. You'll see exactly what's on offer, and what you'll get for your money - right down to the size of your hotel shower or the view from a typical room.

Look Before You Book(tm) camera crews regularly update the company's extensive film library. The material is currently available to consumers on free videos available from travel agents.

Over the past eight years, Look Before You Book(tm) crews have travelled to hundreds of hotels and attractions at key Air New Zealand destinations in the Asia Pacific region, as well as London and parts of Europe.

Destinations now available for viewing include Australia, Singapore, Fiji, Cook Islands, Hawaii, Los Angeles, San Francisco and London.

Filming of New Zealand hotels and attractions is planned for 2002.

HOW IT WORKS

The Video Travel Planner takes all the guesswork out of travel planning. Once logged on, Internet users can view and compare destinations and attractions. See Disney's latest theme park attractions; experience a lagoon cruise on a secluded pacific island or sample shopping in the crowded malls of Melbourne.

A "Where To Stay" section offers a comprehensive range of hotels and apartments including budget and luxury options. Other categories cover "How To Get There" and "What To Do".

Look Before You Book(tm) Managing Director Peter Tanner says travellers will be able to view edited clips, build an itinerary and check costs with a reputable travel service provider - all at one entertaining and easy to navigate website.

"We all know the risks of planning a holiday based on just a few photos in a glossy brochure," he says. "Streaming video provides far more detail and a far more realistic view. Now consumers can judge for themselves. No camera filters, no fake sunsets - what you see is what you get."

Mr Tanner says the new site will provide consumers around the world with the convenience of the Internet while delivering a level of detail not currently available from brochures. It also enhances consultant knowledge.

THE CONCEPT

Once you've logged onto the Video Travel Planner homepage, you'll be directed to a maps area you can choose your holiday destination.

Next, you have the option of watching informative 60-90 second video clips including helpful commentaries on a range of hotels and local attractions. These items are presented and produced by our experienced team of travel reporters.

The new website's Personal Travel Planner feature allows you to compile your holiday options into a list for viewing later. Once you have planned the holiday, you can request a quote from one of the listed travel service providers.

GLOBAL FOCUS

The Look Before You Book(tm) Video Travel Planner is designed for integration with existing travel or tourism websites, both here and overseas. Air New Zealand and Cook Islands Tourism are among the first travel organisations to combine the technology and content within their own websites.

Our video archive is already the most comprehensive in the region. The company's goal is to become the world's no 1 supplier of Pacific Rim video-based travel information.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE CONTACT Peter Tanner Look Before You Book Phone: (09) 356 7800 Mobile: 021 379 379 Email: peter@lbyb.co.nz

(continued...) LOOK BEFORE YOU BOOK

FACTSHEET

* Look Before You Book(tm) is a specialist company based in New Zealand. The company is a leader in the marketing of the Pacific Rim, Singapore and London, to the world.

* Look Before You Book(tm) is actively involved in producing and regularly updating a unique range of 'take-home' video brochures for both the travel industry and the travel consumer.

* After 8 years of distribution, Look Before You Book(tm) videos and CDRoms now reach 2 out of 3 New Zealand travel agents and their customers. Titles are updated annually.

* The company employs 7 fulltime staff in Auckland as well as a team of freelance presenters, camera crews, videotape editors and web designers.

* Postproduction work is carried out on site in the company's digital edit suite, located in the Look Before You Book(tm) offices in Ponsonby.

* Look Before You Book(tm) videos play a key role in the marketing of the Air New Zealand Holidays brand. Our customers include Air New Zealand along with hundreds of property operators, attractions and activities through the Pacific, Australia and USA.

* National Tourist Offices among our customers include Tourism Queensland, Tourism New South Wales, Tourism Victoria, Cook Islands Tourism, Fiji Visitors Bureau, Singapore Tourism Board and others.

* Consumers have embraced online travel planning faster than any other e-commerce activity. It is predicted a quarter of all web business will be travel-related by the end of 2002. Estimates of world travel sales via the Internet are put at more than US$200 billion by 2004.

* During 2001, Look Before You Book(tm) was selected as a recipient for a Technology New Zealand grant for research and development in the private sector. The grant will be used to further our research into streaming video.

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