In October 2017, I wrote a blog about the technical and commercial challenges of NDC. The title was “The reality behind NDC: Why NDC won’t break down the GDS oligopoly – yet”; A year later, I guess one can say for sure that the last word “yet” of the title can be erased. The New Distribution Capability – or in short NDC – will come that’s for sure, but primarily through the GDSs! Continue reading
Costs down – quality up: productivity in software development is a triad of development standards, automation and reuse.
In my article “Individual Standard: Mass Customization in Software Development” I pointed out how optimization potentials can be exploited by reusing fine-granular business and technical components. Here, the development of a travel management system served as an example with – a total of 2,286 man days saved. Continue reading
It sounds so easy to use NDC, but the reality is: Not too many bookings are being made. Why?
Airlines including Lufthansa, British Airways, Iberia and American have announced direct connect initiatives via NDC. They either introduced charges to book through a GDS or will be offering additional capabilities if booked directly through their NDC interface. When it comes to costs (or certain fares not being available in preferred channels) it affects everybody. It sounds so easy to use NDC, but the reality is: Not too many bookings are being made – especially for business travel. Why is that? Continue reading
Developed from practice to practice: Today I present the second book of my series “Increasing Productivity of Software Development”. Topics are the application, evaluation and optimization of the KPIs productivity, costs and quality.
While the first book figured out experiences with different measuring methods, my second book entitled “Management Model, Cost Estimation and KPI Improvement” describes a management model based on key performance indicators. Continue reading
Travel topics explained in a simple way: Today let us understand the difference between fares, rates and tariffs.
As a definition, a fare is usually referenced to in air travel while rates are used with hotels. According to ATPCO (Airline Tariff Publishing Company), a fare is not only the amount a passenger pays, it also contains the conditions for travel at this amount – that are the rules and/or restrictions that must be satisfied in order to qualify for a specific fare. Continue reading
Complex requirements, ever shorter development periods and increasing cost pressure – productivity is an issue of increasing importance in software development. This is the starting point for my book project “Productivity and Performance Measurement – Measurability and Methods”.
As Head of the Competence Center Project Governance, I am responsible for the process engineering for software development at PASS. For several years we have been using key performance indicators as a major information source of our IT management – in more than ten different application environments with more than 500 customers and approx. 250,000 users. In some areas our regularly measured KPIs show significantly higher delivery productivity. Continue reading
Earlier I talked about the structure of the travel industry. We saw how the industry can be divided into five parts: Suppliers, inventory management, distribution, sales and market.
Today I would like to just focus on the distribution and the inventory management and therefore on the differences between CRS (central reservation systems) and GDS (global distribution systems).
Industrialization vs. individualization = mass vs. individual production – an equation which has largely lost its validity today. In the industrial sector as well as in software development the future belongs to customized mass production (mass customization).
For a long time, mass production allowed an optimum utilization of operating assets and thus higher quantities, shorter delivery times and lower product prices than individual production which is rather characterized by more attractive and usable products. Continue reading
Blockchain, cryptocurrencies, the Bitcoin & Ether rollercoaster – is it a digital revolution or a fake hype? What does it mean for travel? Are you missing out?
The frequent reader of this blog knows that I’m not blogging every other week in order to boost the Google ranking of this blog, but I rather try to dive deep into topics that may matter and provide as much information as possible to explain the topic. My goal is to create the articles of this blog as a one-stop shop in order to get a comprehensive overview of the topic. So, this time I want to touch another hype topic: Blockchain (in travel). Continue reading
Complicated topics explained in a simple way: What is a ‘married segment’ and how is it related to the terms ‘stopover’ and ‘connection’?
A question on my blog post “What Is a Passenger Service System?” made me realize there are still a few terms which are not explained in a simple way on the internet. While there are tons of suggestions what agents can do to take advantage of ‘married segments’, I couldn’t find it explained in a simple way. Hence, I just wrote a dummy article about it. Continue reading
A German magazine reports that politics may pave the way for ground transportation intermediaries such as Uber, Lyft etc. to legally challenge the legacy taxi monopoly in Germany – the largest travel market in Europe.
Laws from the 1960s or even 1930s are not appropriate for innovation as part of the digital age. Some laws protect an industry that failed to innovate over years. Also, chauffeur driven ride sharing is currently not allowed in Germany, even though it would relieve heavily congested road significantly. Continue reading
Complicated topics explained in a simple way: Today let us understand what incentives, commission & overrides are.
I spoke a lot about Incentives, commission & overrides in my blog post about the US Airways vs. Sabre trial, where many numbers came to light and provided insight into the money flow here. But this time, I want to focus on what those numbers actually mean. Continue reading
Complicated topics explained in a simple way: Today let us understand what active and passive segments are.
First of all, what is a segment? We often talk about booking, segments, etc. but I have not yet provided a clear explanation of a segment other than that a booking on average has 2 ½ segments. Continue reading
Complicated topics explained in a simple way: What is the difference between booking, waitlisting, ticketing, codeshare and interlining?
Everybody who has ever traveled has come across those terms, but have you ever wondered what they all mean? This article of the series Travel Technology for Dummies will shed some light on what it means if somebody has a booking, is waitlisted or actually has a ticket (or an interline ticket). Continue reading
At the Google I/O developer conference that took place in mid-May, Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced to around 7,000 guests nothing less than a change of course towards artificial intelligence. But the company’s objectives remain virtually unchanged: to collect data and win over new customers.
The topic dominating the conference: intelligence, or more specifically, artificial intelligence (AI). With the help of AI, devices will understand their users in the future even better than before, making their lives much easier. Continue reading
Complicated topics explained in a simple way: Last time I explained what a booking reference or PNR is. Today let us talk about the Passenger Service System (PSS).
The PSS usually comprises of the Central Reservation System (CRS), in other words booked inventory, an airline inventory system (free inventory) and a departure control system (DCS). It is basically the technology an airline needs: Continue reading
Political unrest, terror attacks, natural disasters, epidemics – (perceived) insecurity is on the rise among business travelers. This poses new challenges for travel risk management.
Despite all the digital innovations, the number of business trips is increasing year after year: they open doors and drive growth. It is therefore hardly a surprise that in the American Express Global Business Travel (GBT)’s European Business Travel Barometer, around 50 percent of those surveyed said that they classified business trips not as a cost, but as an investment. And costs are also taking a backseat elsewhere: security is increasingly prioritized as the most important aim of travel management. Continue reading
Complicated topics explained in a simple way: Today let us understand what overbooking means.
Since United’s disastrous ‘removal‘ of a paying passenger with an assigned seat from an airplane in early April 2017, which went viral in social media all over the world, the term ‘overbooking’ is on everybody’s mind. But what are ‘must-ride passengers’ and what does ‘overbooking’ actually mean? Continue reading
Complicated topics explained in a simple way: Today let us look at booking references or PNRs.
What is a booking reference or PNR? A booking reference, also referred to as a PNR or Record Locator, is the airline’s internal identifier for your flight booking within their computer system. It is generated by the airline’s computer system, not by the travel agent or GDS. If your flights involve different airlines, there are often separate PNRs for each carrier for use within their respective systems, but you may be given only the ticketing airline’s PNR. Continue reading
Everyone is talking about chatbots, but they are still at a very early stage of their evolution. For the vision to become reality, a measure of added value is necessary.
When people mention the word “bot” today, most of them are thinking about social bots. These publish predetermined messages on social networks, create new ones by themselves, respond to keywords or automatically share content on related topics. They were heavily used during the recent US presidential election campaign. As exciting as this topic is, however, today I am focusing on another type of bot: the chatbot. Continue reading