Post-COVID travel demand accelerating transformation of online travel retailing
Consumer demand to return to travel as COVID-19 restrictions ease is accelerating the transformation of online travel retailing, giving extra impetus to New Distribution Capability (NDC) technology which enables highly personalised retail offers based on a traveller’s individual travel history and preferences.
Pre-pandemic, the aviation industry made a commitment to transform the way flights are sold online by introducing NDC, with airlines globally investing significantly in progressing this program.
The logjam has been that not all agencies and booking channels have invested in developing the technology capability to access NDC content from airlines, meaning that – for the time being – consumers’ access to these deals is limited to a few booking channels that can aggregate content from NDC sources.
Qantas is leading the NDC-charge in Australia, and is taking advantage of a resurgence in travel demand following 12 months of reduced leisure and business travel activity. Leveraging its significant investment in developing its own NDC solution, called the Qantas Distribution Platform (QDP), Qantas has recently launched discounted offers to its frequent flyers, with savings of up to 30% on business class airfares booked via QDP-enabled channels.
Corporate Travel Management (CTM) has worked with Qantas and other international airlines for more than three years to develop proprietary technology which can consume and sell NDC content, and was the first travel management company in Australia to deliver live NDC content to its corporate customers.
CTM Australia & New Zealand CEO, Greg McCarthy said, “NDC is transforming online travel retailing, and delivering significant savings to consumers in the process, which is more important than ever as businesses, and individuals, look forward to getting back to travel.
“We’re seeing achievable savings of up to $750 per flight on some of the longer domestic Australian routes, compared against standard airfares. That is a significant saving for businesses, especially those small to medium sized enterprises hard-hit during the pandemic, and it’s encouraging them to travel again to re-connect with their customers, staff and suppliers.”
“While its early days, customers are embracing the benefits of the technology. Offers on the Qantas Distribution Platform are encouraging businesses back to travel by delivering meaningful savings to their bottom line.”