A BIT ABOUT QANTAS
Since its beginnings in outback Queensland, millions of people from Australia and around the world have crossed the globe with Qantas. The brand is legendary in the travel industry and has been servering communities for more than 100 years. Today, the carrier is firmly focused on continuing its journey into the future of retailing, with the next stop on the map being NDC.
Retailing focus in the agency channel:
- Taking the ‘Spirit of Australia’ worldwide
- Making a broad range of offers easily available via NDC
- Enabling quality customer service through NDC
Delivering on NDC
Consumers today expect shopping experiences that are fast, simple, and personalized. In travel, they want more choice and more clarity on what they’re buying. And, they want more control over their bookings, with access to support if they need it. For Qantas, through its NDC program — The Qantas Distribution Platform — is the route to delivering on these modern retailing expectations. But in the agency channel, that requires an Approved Technology Partner that can quickly deliver the capabilities that NDC requires. Enter Travelport+.
Retailing through travel agencies
Nathan says, “As retailers, travel agencies provide enormous value to Qantas. They explain our products and services to travelers. They’re excellent at helping customers create the trip that best suits their needs and budget, plus after-sales support.”
The challenge airlines typically have when selling through the agency channel is that they can’t fully communicate the information they want to through traditional technology. Limitations also apply for some aspects of servicing, like making trip changes. That’s where Travelport + plays a huge role.
For Qantas, modern retailing in the agency space really means NDC. We’re really committed to NDC and the benefits that it brings to our customers and our agency partners.
Nathan Smeulders, Senior Manager, Distribution at Qantas
Where does NDC fit in?
Nathan continues, “With customer expectations changing, the way we deal with customers has to change too. Customers have so much available at their fingertips now, and they expect to be able to get this level of information in travel too. This is one of the reasons we’re investing so heavily in NDC, to provide that knowledge, but also to support it with better servicing.”
Nathan believes there’s still quite some uncertainty in the industry about what NDC means. Qantas is working closely with Travelport to help travel agencies understand what’s in it for them. To help the industry better understand the value NDC offers, Qantas is focused on:
- Providing more information during shopping to help decision-making
- Increasing the amount of offers, products, and services available to agents
- Making things simpler, and allowing agencies to better manage trip servicing
Choice, convenience, service
Qantas has been working closely with Travelport to develop its NDC capabilities through the Qantas Distribution Platform. The airline engaged a number of travel agencies to pilot that functionality, before the booking capability and the journeys themselves were made available. The new developments within Travelport+ lets Qantas offer more content, better servicing capabilities, and more automation, making things simpler and more efficient for everyone.
Over the past year, Travelport and Qantas have witnessed the fruits of their combined efforts. Since the first Qantas NDC booking made on Travelport+ in March 2021, NDC bookings on Qantas are increasing all the time. It’s proof that NDC not only works, it’s adding value for customers and travel agencies.
We’ve been working closely with Travelport on NDC, and we’re really excited about the progress it’s making.
Nathan Smeulders, Senior Manager, Distribution at Qantas,
Looking towards the future
The next 100 years of retailing is looking bright for Qantas. With Travelport+, the Qantas Distribution Platform is set up to help agencies better support their customers and drive NDC bookings in the indirect channel.
“Travelport’s NDC capabilities are excellent. We’re particularly excited that larger agencies are connected on the platform and the volume of NDC bookings is increasing. We’ll continue to deliver our best offers through NDC, and continuously refine our booking and servicing capabilities.” said Nathan.