Merchant Innovation

That Was Quick. Amazon Folds Travel Marketplace

While Amazon is known for trying its luck in a number of different ventures (think grocery delivery, streaming devices and even drones), travel will no longer be one of them.

The eCommerce retailer quietly shut down its travel site, Amazon Destinations, earlier this week.

"We have learned a lot and have decided to discontinue Amazon Destinations," a company spokesperson said in a statement yesterday (Oct. 14), Bloomberg reported.

Just six months ago, Amazon officially confirmed the rumors and speculation that it was going to enter the travel business by creating Amazon Destinations as a place where popular destinations were automatically populated based on where a user was located, encouraging Amazon customers to find unique weekend getaways close to home.

With a tagline “Hit the road: Book local getaways,” Amazon said the site would help to solve a common problem amongst most travelers: how to easily plan and book a local getaway trip.

The Destinations page also allowed hotels to offer discounts, packaged deals, etc. on Amazon, and for users to secure reservations directly using the calendar on the site.

For a while it seemed as though Amazon’s push into travel arena was seeing some success, with the company announcing it was expanding the service into three new metropolitan areas in and around Atlanta, Houston and San Francisco. It was also expanded across the northeast metropolitan area to include cities that are drivable for Boston residents, which brought Amazon Destinations into a total of six metro regions and 35 getaway destinations.

While Amazon will no longer be selling reservations on and the Amazon Local app, any reservations customers have already booked will be honored by hotels.

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The How We Shop Report, a PYMNTS collaboration with PayPal, aims to understand how consumers of all ages and incomes are shifting to shopping and paying online in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our research builds on a series of studies conducted since March, surveying more than 16,000 consumers on how their shopping habits and payments preferences are changing as the crisis continues. This report focuses on our latest survey of 2,163 respondents and examines how their increased appetite for online commerce and digital touchless methods, such as QR codes, contactless cards and digital wallets, is poised to shape the post-pandemic economy.