We’re incredibly excited to announce that, earlier last week, we achieved a significant milestone in the travel industry by processing the world’s first hospitality booking on the blockchain using smart contract technology!
Back in February, we unveiled the new direction of the project — which we dubbed “Dtravel v2” — that focuses on creating a direct short-term accommodation booking ecosystem powered by smart contracts and owned by hosts themselves.
The core idea was to enable hosts and guests to transact with each other in a peer-to-peer manner without any intermediaries. Dtravel would simply act as the technology provider by building easy-to-use web3 tools for travel participants to use, drastically reducing fees, improving host-guest relationships and creating a fairer, autonomous and transparent booking ecosystem in the process.
To create a property listing on Dtravel, property managers and hosts set the booking conditions — such as the price per night, cleaning fee, and cancellation policy — within a smart contract unique to each listing.
When a guest makes a booking, the details of that booking are cryptographically signed and included in the on-chain booking transaction, along with the booking payment. The transaction is then sent to the listing’s smart contract to be held in decentralized escrow and is handled by the predefined rules of the smart contract.
Once the cancellation period ends, the smart contract will automatically release the funds to the host, provided the guest doesn’t cancel within this period.
The first smart contract-powered direct booking milestone was made in London, England at a property hosted by Amir, the first host in the UK to list his properties using Dtravel. Amir has been part of our Host Beta Program since very early on and has been immensely helpful by dedicating his time to try new concepts, provide insights into his business and offer feedback on the user experience.
Commenting on the transaction, Amir said: "I'm extremely passionate about providing the best possible experience for my guests and love trying out new technologies. Having the ability to pass on savings to guests through direct stays while gaining greater control over my business without spending time and resources on setting up my own direct booking website immediately resonated with me."
Hosts can now register for the Beta Pilot Program, which equips them with a direct booking site powered by web3 technology. Using a property management system (PMS), hosts can easily connect to Dtravel, deploy their listings and begin accepting smart contract-enabled direct bookings in minutes.
Like with traditional direct booking sites, hosts are currently responsible for driving their own traffic to their Dtravel listings. Travelers can join the waitlist to receive updates about the launch of the guest-facing product or start booking properties at any of our featured hosts below:
View Amir’s listings (UK Host)
View Tom's listings (UK Host)
View Seven’s listings (US Host)
View Parker’s listings (US Host)
View The Stay Hub’s listings (NZ Host)
Visit Matthew’s listings (US and VI Host)
In the coming months, we’ll be focusing on reducing onboarding friction while working closely with hosts to optimize the direct booking product by adding new customization features and tools.
In addition to building a direct booking tool that reduces a host’s reliance on third-party online travel agencies, we’ll also soon be creating a guest-facing meta search product, enabling guests to easily discover and book direct stays with hosts from around the world.