Amadeus Corporate Blog
Let's shape the future of travel
Surely it cannot be a coincidence that the European Union is introducing its new data protection regulation, GPDR, on 25 May, the day known to SciFi fans the world over as ‘Towel Day’? For the uninitiated, ‘Towel Day’...
Surely it cannot be a coincidence that the European Union is introducing its new data protection regulation, GPDR, on 25 May, the day known to SciFi fans the world over as ‘Towel Day’?
For the uninitiated, ‘Towel Day’ celebrates the life and literature of the late great Douglas Adams, the British author of The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy novels and (for the Netflix generation) Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency.
The Guide advises space travelers to always travel with a towel because, after all, ‘a towel is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have. …. You can wrap it around you for warmth … use it to sail a mini-raft down the slow heavy River Moth… wet it for use in hand-to-hand-combat. You can wave your towel in emergencies as a distress signal, and of course dry yourself off with it if it still seems to be clean enough.’
Well, today we are all travelers, heading into the (partially) unknown space of a new data protection environment. While we have done everything we can to prepare for GDPR, it is not until regulatory bodies start to enforce its provisions that we will really understand how the European Union’s equivalent of The Guide, an 88 page document with a multitude of emerging guidance at European and national level, is going to impact us. (For our initiated: perhaps the answer is indeed 42).
So, as we navigate this privacy asteroid field it’s going to be really important to also keep our towel close by.
And this means two key things for all of us. First, we have to adhere to the privacy principles of GDPR: transparency – make sure we let people know how Amadeus is processing their data; proportionality – process data only as necessary to provide services and share it on a need-to-know basis; and adequate protection – keep the data secure and treat it as strictly confidential.
Just as importantly, however, we now need to incorporate those principles as a matter of ‘privacy by design’ into our entire development cycle. We need to promote compliance right from first concept and take the opportunity to lead the travel industry in this cutting edge field.
The outlook and expertise required for this is something of a step change for us, but so long as we look after our towel, then I know that this is a challenge we can meet.
There are sure to be some difficult days ahead of us. Fortunately, the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy dispenses advice that goes beyond towels and is useful in most eventualities.
As the cover of The Guide reassuringly advises all of us in bold neon letters: “DON’T PANIC!’
It’s an age old adage that actions speak louder than words. At Fundación SERES, we help companies take action to improve society. Our mission as a non-profit is to translate strategic and innovative business actions, ...
It’s an age old adage that actions speak louder than words. At Fundación SERES, we help companies take action to improve society. Our mission as a non-profit is to translate strategic and innovative business actions, with engagement from top management, into social improvement. We meet the challenge of sitting society and company at the same table to create and share value.
As society works towards the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Fundación SERES helps companies to see corporate social responsibility not as a challenge but as an opportunity to innovate, to adapt to new circumstances and create competitive advantage in the long term.
We help companies achieve positive social and business outcomes in four ways. First, we share business and social knowledge to put good practices in place and strengthen the active role of companies as agents of change. Then we build value and we measure it to guarantee the strategic vision of projects and position social actions as key initiatives. Today, some 140 companies and institutions across all sectors, representing around 70% of the IBEX-35, are members of our organization. They share the common goal of building a more sustainable future for all. We are now delighted to welcome Amadeus on board.
We see sustainability as a long-term commitment. This will require the enthusiasm, creativity and proactivity of institutions, individuals and governments. The role of leading companies like Amadeus will prove instrumental in achieving long-term economic and social development. We look forward to building a better society with Amadeus.
The post Amadeus and Fundación SERES: Building a better society together appeared first on Amadeus Corporate Blog.
Travel and tourism are clearly on the rise, but how can this growth be sustained? This was a key question at the Hosteltur Forum 2018, held under the theme, “The challenge of growth: winning business models”. Air pass...
Travel and tourism are clearly on the rise, but how can this growth be sustained? This was a key question at the Hosteltur Forum 2018, held under the theme, “The challenge of growth: winning business models”.
Air passengers will grow from the current 4 billion to 7.8 billion by 2036. In the case of Spain, visitor numbers increased by 8.9% last year, totaling 82 million. Spanish travel companies are betting on Asia Pacific and Latin America to grow their business. But the way ahead is not free of challenges.
The travel sector is carefully following several key trends. These include globalization, new business models, and the digitalization of products to name a few. Only by getting ready for these changes and adapting business models will industry players be able to tackle the challenges of growth.
In a travel environment defined by market consolidation and digital growth, Juan Jesús García, Head of Industry Affairs Europe at Amadeus, shared the basic principles needed to secure a sustainable, solid, and robust travel distribution sector:
The post Hosteltur Forum 2018 spotlights winning models for a growing industry appeared first on Amadeus Corporate Blog.
Business travelers expect consumer-grade user experiences and are keen to live like a local while away on business. Corporations understand that travel is a means to attract and retain talent. New entrants – whether o...
Business travelers expect consumer-grade user experiences and are keen to live like a local while away on business. Corporations understand that travel is a means to attract and retain talent. New entrants – whether online travel management companies (online TMCs), metasearches or start-ups – are pushing into corporate travel, bringing with them both technology, such as chatbots and artificial intelligence, and business model innovation.
However, these types of challenges are not unique to corporate travel. We live in a world where practically every business has to become a technology company, regardless of whether they are a bank or a fast food chain. There’s great opportunity for those who are successful in this transformation.
McDonald’s: a study in successful transformation
The first cornerstone of McDonald’s success was being, at the same time, very clear about its core activity, but also ambitious to stay ahead of the technology curve. The mission of McDonald’s remained “to be our customers’ favorite place and way to eat and drink”. At the same time McDonald’s incorporated transformation into its vision: “Become a modern, progressive burger company delivering a contemporary customer experience.”
The second success factor was that McDonald’s used technology as an amplifier, a means rather than an end. McDonald’s value proposition remained fundamentally unchanged, but it applied technology to improve the customer experience significantly. Customers can now walk up to a touchscreen, browse the menu, place their order, pay by card and pick up their order. And yes – almost as a side benefit – McDonald’s improved throughput, increased sales and reduced costs.
The third element was finding its own way to becoming a technology company. This transformation doesn’t have to mean developing technology from scratch. Rather it can simply mean applying technology to significantly improve the value you deliver to your customers. The technology itself could be developed internally, acquired or developed by a third party.
Applying the recipe in Business Travel Agencies
Business Travel Agencies (BTAs) can also apply the same recipe for success. The first step is to affirm core activity and value proposition, while simultaneously setting the ambition to take that to the next level through technology. Here, different BTAs are likely to come up with different answers: some leaning more to service, some opting for the online TMC route, and others choosing vertical specialization.
The lesson is clear. Once value proposition is well-defined, then decide how technology can amplify it best. Perhaps it’s by offering a personalized search and book experience powered by artificial intelligence; a mobile application that supports and guides travelers while on trip; or an automated disruption management system that helps travelers avoid queuing at the airport.
Finally, BTAs need to find their own way to become a technology company. It is important that it is defined what they are going to do themselves, and how they secure those capabilities, whether through hiring, acquisition or outsourcing. So, on top of all the changes in the travel industry, the challenge is to become a technology company. If the transformation is right – like McDonald’s – BTAs can secure future relevance, sell better, sell more and reduce costs.
Download our report, Better Business, Smarter Travel: Perspectives on the future of Managed Travel 3.0 for more.
Business travel is inherently valuable, generating over €1.3 trillion for the global economy in 2018 and growing at 7% per annum. Whether you’re out there trying to build customer relationships, bringing teams togethe...
Business travel is inherently valuable, generating over €1.3 trillion for the global economy in 2018 and growing at 7% per annum. Whether you’re out there trying to build customer relationships, bringing teams together to strengthen an organizational culture, or expanding your network at an industry conference, face-to-face interaction makes the difference. In today’s global economy, business travel is a strategic necessity in making organizations successful. And looking after business travelers throughout their journey until they arrive back home safely is more important than ever.
Based on what our customers tell us and on our own observations, we believe there are opportunities to continue to improve the business travel experience. We also believe that business travel agencies will continue to play a critical role in helping corporations realize maximum value from their travel programs, and this includes supporting business travelers when the unexpected happens.
But the playing field has changed. Business travel agencies offer managed travel services to companies of all sizes. These companies expect their agencies to help optimize travel spend and stay compliant on policy and duty of care while delivering great traveler service. Of course, with ongoing cost and revenue pressure, business travel agencies also look to further automate processes, drive efficiencies and tap into higher margin opportunities. So our customers are looking for support to provide new and enhanced services, with a big focus on continued adoption of corporate booking tools and mobile services, and to grow attachment rates for a broader range of lodging and ground transportation options.
For us this means giving access to greater aggregated global and local content. It means intelligent search and automation solutions for agencies to manage the complexity of business travel and more efficiently offer a personalized customer experience. It also means being open to exploring new opportunities to help them reshape the business travel experience around today’s corporate citizen. We are committed to working with our customers to find the right answers to these challenges and push the traditional boundaries. And there is no player better positioned than Amadeus to do that.
I am excited about our evolution because it puts business travel agencies at the heart of everything we do. We have a clear road map to provide solutions that enable business travel agencies to address the challenges they face. We also work with our customers to leverage our significant technology investments to power and complement their own solutions. Most importantly, our evolved Travel Channels organization will ensure our customers benefit from our local presence backed by a global team of experts with a singular focus on the business travel space.
Business travel is big business. My team and I come to work every day with one goal top of mind: helping our customers succeed. It’s really that simple.
Stay tuned for updates on how we’re working with all of our customers to shape the future of business travel.
The post How we’re putting the needs of business travel agencies first appeared first on Amadeus Corporate Blog.
It should come as no surprise that digital is fueling corporate travelers’ thirst for a more on-demand, mobile, and personalized experience. Yet many struggle with outdated technology and rely on multiple applications...
It should come as no surprise that digital is fueling corporate travelers’ thirst for a more on-demand, mobile, and personalized experience. Yet many struggle with outdated technology and rely on multiple applications or websites to navigate their journey.
With global business travel spend set to reach $1.6 trillion in 2020, according to the Global Business Travel Association, the management of travel and expense processes and the wellbeing of the travelling workforce will have a critical influence on corporate performance for companies globally.
Increasingly, more companies are evolving towards a more professional view of travel management. Globalia is a great example of this. Its specialized business travel brand, Globalia Corporate Travel (GCT), will migrate to Amadeus cytric Travel and Expense, our new platform. GCT has more than 200 specialized centers and serves more than 7,000 corporate clients nationally and internationally.
Thanks to the implementation of this tool, several products that were previously offered separately such as, traveler tracking, travel expenses control, report and reconciliation, will be unified in a single application. These new features are added to the options that were previously available. Moreover, GCT, will provide its customers with an interactive control panel that shows a global view of the entire cycle of the trip. This includes expenses, which will simplify strategic decision making for corporate travel managers.
This game-changing solution enhances and simplifies user experience, provides always-connected duty of care throughout the traveler journey, and improves efficiency and productivity for corporate booking and expense management.
We’re excited about how this partnership will empower hundreds of businesses across GCT’s footprint. They will benefit from greater visibility into how travel is being managed, and it will equip travelers with the tools to make their trips simple, stress-free, and rewarding.
For more information, check out Amadeus’ corporate solutions site.
The post Globalia Corporate Travel migrates to Amadeus cytric Travel & Expense appeared first on Amadeus Corporate Blog.
Putting our customers at the center or everything we do is a priority for us. This is why we gathered around 140 executives from the global hospitality sector to have an open and honest discussion about the landscape ...
Putting our customers at the center or everything we do is a priority for us. This is why we gathered around 140 executives from the global hospitality sector to have an open and honest discussion about the landscape of today’s hotel industry, the guests of tomorrow, and the expectations that we not only need to meet, but exceed. These conversations form the basis of our new report: Open the door to opportunity: collaborating to win in the hotel distribution playing field.
We see three key trends in the hotel industry we need to watch, learn from, and make a strategic decision on: scale and diversification, personalization, and innovation. By taking a deeper look at these trends, this paper identifies key recommendations for hotel distribution industry players, both big and small.
We think that innovation and technology are the key to tackling new customer behaviors. We want this paper to be the follow up to the conversations we had with our customers at the Amadeus Hotel Exchange and over the past year. We need to keep that conversation going: the pace of change is only going to get faster, and the already competitive landscape will see more new entrants from all corners. The topics highlighted in the paper can anchor those conversations.
At Amadeus, we are passionate in our pursuit of better technology that improves our customers’ and, in turn, their customers’ experiences. We will succeed by working together to help everyone shape their own journeys. It’s time to explore ideas and not be afraid to try things, fail and then move on.
I invite you to download a copy of Open the door to opportunity: collaborating to win in the hotel distribution playing field. We look forward to hearing your thoughts on this paper, and to working together to inspire better guest experiences, overcome industry challenges, and shape the future of travel.
The post Collaborating to win in the hotel distribution playing field appeared first on Amadeus Corporate Blog.
Doing expenses after a business trip can be taxing. Using manual or semi-manual expense solutions is complex – often impractical. Expense management needs to be simple, agile and economical. Automated expense manageme...
Doing expenses after a business trip can be taxing. Using manual or semi-manual expense solutions is complex – often impractical. Expense management needs to be simple, agile and economical.
Automated expense management for a well-rounded travel policy
Automated expense management is an alternative that also helps to generate new revenues as well as ensuring it closely integrates with the online booking tool. This means flights, hotels, and car rental costs are synced with on-trip expenses like taxi fares, Wi-Fi receipts, and restaurant bills. According to PayStream, 65% of indirect business travel costs are saved by automating travel expense management.
This is why Amadeus has developed an Expense Reader function within Amadeus cytric Travel & Expense, to recognize important, expense-related information on scanned receipts.
Amadeus has integrated ABBYY FineReader Engine, a powerful software development kit for optical character recognition (OCR), into the Expense Reader’s natural language processing (NLP) engine to read expense receipts accurately and provide expense management solutions. ABBYY is a global company with deep experience in capturing content with innovative language-based technologies, delivering excellent recognition quality. Enhanced with machine learning technology, the Expense Reader can continually improve itself and adapt to customer requirements automatically.
Business travelers can use the Expense Reader function as part of the cytric mobile app. It reads the contents of scanned and saved receipts and populates the corresponding fields of the travel expense report they have created – thus simplifying and speeding up the expense reconciliation process.
Key technological benefits
- High recognition rate: Combining OCR with machine learning allows the expense reader to understand specific inputs such as amount, date and tax rate.
- Data privacy: Amadeus’ Expense Reader functions within cytric and ABBYY’s FineReader Engine ensuring client data remains private and secure.
Amadeus commissioned a study by The London School of Economics and Political Science – ‘Managing Every Mile: How to deliver greater return on investment from Travel and Expense’ – the report found that 90% of respondents who use expense management tools feel that it is an obstruction. Only 21% of the respondents use scan-and-send automation and 35% will replace their T&E systems in the next 12-18 months.
Companies can leverage Amadeus cytric Travel & Expense with integrated ABBYY technology to deploy automated, integrated travel and expense systems, thus benefiting from its mobile scan-and-go technology and conducting granular reporting on expense items.
Find out more about Amadeus cytric Travel & Expense here.
The post Expense reports made easy thanks to high quality receipt capturing technology appeared first on Amadeus Corporate Blog.
At the very core of everything we do at Amadeus, is a commitment to transformational, sustainable and inclusive growth of global travel and tourism. This is why we are excited about being part of the innovative model ...
Svend Leirvaag (center) at the Indaba Trade Fair in Durban
At the very core of everything we do at Amadeus, is a commitment to transformational, sustainable and inclusive growth of global travel and tourism. This is why we are excited about being part of the innovative model for private-public collaboration announced at the Indaba Trade Fair in Durban yesterday. This new approach aspires to deliver new technology and data solutions, services and training solutions to meet the growing needs of South Africa’s travel and tourism industry.
The new partnership with the National Department of Tourism and the South African tourism industry, with support from the Department of Trade and Industry, is a long-term commitment by the industry to work together for the greater good. The aim is to develop several programs, including a National Tourism Visitor Information System (NTVIS) and a Travel and Tourism Training Academy, to drive inclusive and transformational growth.
The NTVIS will be a new online platform through which South Africa will develop and commercialize an expanded tourism offering, curate and analyze tourism data for valuable insights into the services and business needs of industry players and better service the needs of visitors. It will build on and improve what already exists, as well as develop completely new solutions, and focus on creating new opportunities for small medium and micro enterprises in the travel industry.
With a special emphasis on the skills that the travel industry requires, and the use of digital and virtual training facilities, the active involvement of the industry in the Travel and Tourism Training Academy will ensure that training leads to employability or employment for young South Africans, with a special focus on women. It will also bring much-needed professional skills and technology solutions to boost small and medium businesses in the tourism sector, especially in rural areas.
The announcement is the result of two years of intensive dialogue among all the stake holders. It coincides well with South African President Cyril Ramaphosa’s call for the private sector to create jobs as the country embarks on the path to economic recovery.
This is the start of a new journey for the travel and tourism industry in South Africa, with a unique model for public-private collaboration to meet the challenges of tomorrow. It will not be easy, and no one should expect miracles, but with everyone’s continued commitment, we believe it can radically change how industry growth contributes to inclusive social and economic development. We also hope that it can be an example to follow.
The post Amadeus and South Africa’s tourism industry collaborate for tourism growth appeared first on Amadeus Corporate Blog.
In Formula 1, it takes around two seconds to complete a pit stop. This incredible feat is possible thanks to the organization and synchronization of each member of the pit crew. While drivers like Lewis Hamilton get t...
In Formula 1, it takes around two seconds to complete a pit stop. This incredible feat is possible thanks to the organization and synchronization of each member of the pit crew. While drivers like Lewis Hamilton get the star treatment, it’s the pit crew who can make or break the race. You could say they’re the unsung heroes of F1 racing.
How can airlines achieve this level of perfection in the revenue optimization field? By transforming their revenue management business, which can be done in 4 steps:
- Organization change management – It’s key to set up clear goals and define a strategy to achieve revenue objectives and most importantly profitability.
- Process change management – Processes need to be efficient and effective. These should include strategic processes like revenue management and pricing strategy as well as operations processes such as demand planning, price sensitivity management and capacity management.
- Working practices – Focus on continuous improvement with an emphasis on the following practices; Plan (planning is key in RM), Do (implement planned actions in the system), Evaluate (data & information), and Act (continuous improvement).
- Team oriented approach – Setting up a winning culture is critical: celebrate success and highlight collaboration.
By following the above steps, our revenue management expert support is helping airlines to produce positive results. We have seen a 5% revenue increase for one of our main customers and we have delivered double digit growth for another airline in its key origin and destination traffic.
Our technology is a big part of this as we continuously work on improving our products and services to help our customers provide travelers with better journeys. However technology on its own wouldn’t mean much without our ‘pit crew’ of revenue management experts. They are specialists with a simple aim: work with our airline customers to achieve the highest possible revenues for each customer journey. And this is more important than ever, given the change in traveler shopping behavior and the competitive market place that is driving down prices.
We think it’s time to rethink revenue optimization and look to more sophisticated systems which are ‘customer’ rather than ‘seat’ centric. Have a look at the Amadeus Airlines Revenue Optimization site and download our Total Offer Optimization report to learn more.
The post Racing towards the 4 steps to airline revenue management perfection appeared first on Amadeus Corporate Blog.