Rebrands to Travala Because They Couldn’t Get the .Com

A cryptocurrency travel startup called announced its decision to rebrand as Travala because it couldn’t get the .com domain name it felt was important. is a domain name owned by Conde Nast that is now used as “all-in-one event concierge platform.” The announcement was published on Medium today.

Here’s what the startup had to say about trying to buy and why it felt that operating on a .com domain name was important to its success:

“It’s been several days since we broke the news of the rebrand. This is something we have given very long, considered and carefully thought over. In the early days of working on Concierge, we were in the process of trying to secure the .com which had no website at the time. Unfortunately, a multi-billion dollar company was able to acquire that domain first.

To move forward and become a truly global travel brand that would appeal to everyone, we’ve always believed a .com was essential to that goal. And so this has provided us a unique opportunity to develop something that we believe will become a name synonymous with travel. That name is… Travala.”

From what I can see with DomainTools’ Whois History tool, Conde Nast has owned since at least 2001. I would imagine the company owned it for longer than that. Even if the domain name was available to buy from the publishing company, I would think it could be worth well into the six figures, despite the difficult spelling.

When I did a Google search to learn more about (now Travala), I could see what the company was up against. Even a Google search of the exact name of the company,, returned a result that left Google asking if I meant to search for

This is another example of a company starting off on an alternative domain name and realizing the importance of owning the .com domain name.

Elliot Silver
Elliot Silver
About The Author: Elliot Silver is an Internet entrepreneur and publisher of Elliot is also the founder and President of Top Notch Domains, LLC, a company that has closed eight figures in deals. Please read the Terms of Use page for additional information about the publisher, website comment policy, disclosures, and conflicts of interest. Reach out to Elliot: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn


  1. I like the Travala name but IMO they will experience some spelling confusion with a firm I notice using which I guess is short for their name Travel Adventures, which mentions on its home page as being “The Angler’s Concierge” Since 1985.

  2. I was expecting you to go into depth about the history of the name and how it was acquired as that would have been interesting as well.

    • Why?

      Most of the time that info is private, and if I am going to email someone to ask to share, it is courteous to wait until they reply (or give them time to reply), and that was less interesting to me than the company opting to totally rebrand because they couldn’t buy the .com.

      Perhaps this will be a lesson for someone else who is thinking about starting off with a non .com.

    • picked up at snapnames in 2016 after dropping, previously regged in 2002. owner has over 100 similar type “brandable” domains. Domain was listed at brandbucket but doesn’t appear to have sold there.

  3. Because that’s half the title of this post it’s half the story. You have access to Domain Tools which now exclusively includes that many don’t have access to. Travails is a nice brandable(and many of us invest and sell brandables) and would have been nice to know if possible where it was bought and for how much….but it looks like a commenter has done that work for you.

    • I write about what I find interesting, and the heart of the story to me was the total rebranding from a one word .io to a brandable .com – not the domain acquisition aspect (which I didn’t even look at).

      With all due respect, them paying under $10k for a brandable like this on a domain marketplace is not really all that interesting from my perspective. It’s cool and all, but not newsworthy or all that notable.

  4. I thought it was that you also have a duty to your loyal readers and your sponsors as well but seems I was wrong.
    The thing is you usually always go into depth on the two sides of a rebrand, just Google : rebrands as

    …..and you will see that you usually write about the old name and background on the new name. But because Travala is a brandable and you don’t invest in brandables it’s not worth writing about?

    I’m done with this blog and to be honest the quality is on a downward spiral since the glory years of 2009-2012. Now it’s mostly retweets, URDP decisions,polls and subliminally selling your names or fishing for one word dot com bargains from readers. You’ve lost that core of the blog, that personal touch that you had in the early years.

    Goodbye, thanks for the good reads tho

    • Without even looking, I can bet the majority of those articles about rebrands involved interesting (likely high value) domain names. This domain name is fine but not noteworthy to me. I didn’t even think about doing a search about the history of the domain name because it wasn’t relevant to me. That wasn’t even on my radar. Brandable names are fine and do sell – some for lots of money – but in this case, the history of the name was not important to me. The rebranding from a .io to a totally different .com was the story.

      Sorry that you feel the way you feel about my blog, but I disagree with you about the content. I feel like it’s the same topics, although perhaps there is less advice and educating because there are only so many times I can regurgitate the same stuff over and over. My business hasn’t changed all that much over the years, and there are only so many articles I can write about contacting end user buyers or negotiating to buy domain names.

      You may be right about the decline of the personal touch. At least part of that is because a couple of people I trust and respect privately commented about the regularity of mentioning domain names I bought or that I bring up domain names I own in articles. I thought about it and agreed, and I hardly ever mention one of my domain names unless I need an example and don’t wish to waste time asking to use someone else’s name as an example.

      I also have not listed a domain name for sale via my blog in years. When I am selling publicly, I will use and will buy an advertisement on I think I did that just once this year though, but I definitely do not promote my domain names for sale on my blog.

      I don’t know who you are, but I am sorry you feel the way you feel, and I am sorry to see you go.

  5. I’ve just got to add a few more things then I’ll step back.
    1) Firstly you’re right about pitching your own domain names you don’t really do that anymore so I take that back, I apologise for that.
    2) “…what’s important to me”. “ ….not noteworthy to me” “ ….not relevant to me”. That’s the thing it’s not just about you. When you were ElliotsBlog then yeah fine but you said yourself when you rebranded to DomainInvesting it was about domain investing not just about what you like. You are being paid to blog, and you said it’s a good amount so you should have done a full write up even if it’s not interesting to you because it could be interesting to a lot of your readers. Look at the commenter above JV he did a great job of getting info on the name, I don’t know how long it took him but you could’ve gone that. You’re getting paid he’s not
    3) I understand the problem of lack of ideas and rehashing old stuff. But as you’re blog is called DomainInvesting and there’ are always newbie domainers entering the industry you should still rehash and rewrite basic tips for these readers. And for new content get someone in, not a sponsored writer but a domainer that maybe invests in a niche and has a fresh perspective on domain investing. There’s always ways around things instead of making excuses.

    I am sorry to leave but it’s frustrating seeing something that was really interesting and good go down and still get more ad dollars than other blogs that have much better content
    Hopefully the blog will improve because it deserves to but I won’t be along for the ride. This half arsed post today has just really vexed me.

    But like I said thanks for the content over the years

  6. I had a forum many years back and ran into similar posters. The information is free at no cost to the readers, so no complaints should be made on how your blog is run.

    • Believe it or not, I appreciate the feedback. I don’t totally agree with what he wrote nor do I think the history of this domain name is very important, but I appreciate when people share their feelings about me and my blog. It gives me something to think about.

  7. I agree with Dale. Brandable names are a big part of many domain investors strategy. It’s interesting that this name was registered way back in 2002 and was a travel site back then. I also find it very interesting that the name possibly sold on BranBucket for $7175. I would have never put that valuation on that name. I could see Travela selling for that but not Travala. I personally think every part of a story is relevant when it comes to domain names. An extra five minutes worth of research makes the story that much better.

    • As I said before, the only thing that caught my eye with this was that a company totally rebranded from a keyword .io to a brandable .com. The history of that domain name was not something I thought about when writing the article.

      Maybe I should have thought about it because I usually look for more details about the domain name, but in this case, it didn’t even cross my mind.

  8. Well with a .io they would have no resonance with consumers. Still I really doubt this company is going to survive,

    “The biggest benefit of using the marketplace, according to the startup, is the zero percent commission charged to vendors on bookings.

    Rather, the company plans to generate revenues through advertising while the low transaction costs for travellers will lead to an overall reduction in prices.”

    This sounds like Y2K era talk!


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