MasterCard in Marketing Alliance with Preview Travel

MasterCard International in Purchase, NY signed a marketing and sponsorship alliance with Preview Travel Inc. designed to increase the number of online travel shoppers.

The alliance makes MasterCard a premier advertiser and the exclusive payment system sponsor for the travel site, as well as the primary sponsor of the Preview Travel Business Travel Center, the company said.

The marketing program, which will appear on Preview Travel’s Web site and on America Online at keyword “previewtravel,” will provide Preview Travel’s MasterCard users with travel and entertainment offers, upgrades, special awards and discounts. The program will also feature a point-of-purchase promotion on Preview Travel’s services on Excite and Lycos. Financial arrangements were not disclosed.

“We are proud to announce MasterCard as a major sponsor, advertiser and our payment system of choice,” said Ken Orton, president and CEO of Preview Travel. “We believe that our affiliation with MasterCard reflects the rapid growth and importance of travel as a leading e-commerce application and points to the value that advertisers place on reaching online consumers.”

The alliance, part of MasterCard’s on-going electronic commerce initiative designed to build consumer awareness and confidence to the benefits of shopping online, will feature MasterCard’s “Shop Smart!” program, which certifies that consumers are shopping on a secure site.

“Online travel is one of the largest segments of e-commerce and this agreement further demonstrates MasterCard’s commitment to becoming the payment of choice for consumers who shop online,” said Larry Flanagan, vice president of advertising at MasterCard International.

MasterCard will be prominently featured on Preview Travel’s Home Page and channels such as FareFinder, which allows visitors to track the best airfares available between a variety of domestic and international cities; CarFinder, which enables consumers to track the best car rental prices available; and on the registration and credit card selection pages utilized by visitors who are purchasing air, car or hotel arrangements on the Preview Travel site.

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