Trust is critical for modern travel retailing

The best brands understand the importance of trust and strive to constantly meet customer expectations, seeking to become synonymous with consumer trust

(Source: Sabre)

By Ladislav Lettovsky, Vice President, Head of Sales Engineering at Sabre.

Some of my favorite hobbies require me to trust other people, sometimes even literally putting my life in someone else's hands. I've already talked about my love for skiing mountains, but I also enjoy climbing them, rock climbing in the summer, and ice climbing in the winter. Those of us who enjoy ice climbing understand and accept that confidence is critical to success.

Mountains are an inherently dangerous place to be, and it is common practice in mountaineering to "tie up" with others for safety, and travel as a team when facing challenging terrain such as crossing a glacier or ascending a frozen gutter on your way to the mountain. summit. If someone slips on a slope or falls into a crevasse, others on the team act as a human anchor to stop the fall and, if necessary, rescue the fallen climber.

Trust is crucial in effective customer relationships

The best brands understand the importance of trust and strive to consistently meet customer expectations, seeking to become synonymous with consumer trust and being customer-focused. In the retail world, Amazon stands out for the level of trust it has built with its customers. This trust means your customers don't need to “shop around” – unrivaled choice from multiple sellers in one place, smart product recommendations and competitive pricing are a given. It is this level of trust that the airline industry must aspire to if it is to successfully transition to a traveler-centric business model in the coming years.

Sabre is building modern next-generation airline retail technology on the three value pillars of choiceintelligence and ease , and it is this concept of "ease", making issuance as easy and convenient as possible for the consumer, which I think goes to the heart of Amazon's success when it comes to building trust. Ease of fulfillment or issuance is critical to the success of any bid-and-order retail model, and critical to building trust. Amazon excels at fulfillment and differentiates itself from any other retailer on that basis alone.

This trust is perhaps best exemplified by Amazon Key, possibly the clearest example of technology-driven innovation combined with superior trust leading to customer-centricity. Through the Amazon Key service, customers with smart home technology, such as an electronic door lock or garage door opener, can grant access to an Amazon delivery driver so that packages can be delivered securely when not available. they are home. Think about that for a moment. Amazon has built so much trust that customers are happy to let an Amazon delivery person, essentially a stranger in an Amazon polo shirt, open their front door, walk into their house and drop off a package.

The future of travel sales 

Sabre research indicates that the airline industry has work to do to earn the trust of consumers looking to purchase non-airline products or services. Nowadays, travelers prefer to buy trips directly from the service provider or a trusted agency. This limits the range of products and services that airlines can sell. Airlines must convince travelers that they can sell and support a broader range of air and non-air services, including content from retail partners, in a bid-and-order future. But the fact that today's travelers lack the confidence to book non-airline products from an airline presents a massive opportunity ( $40 billion *) for those airlines that can successfully earn the trust of the traveler.

More more more

A modern retail business model with aligned technology and business processes are key ingredients in the recipe for superior consumer trust. Sabre's next-generation solutions will enable airlines to consistently deliver on the promise of more choice, more relevant recommendations, and smoother issuance for travelers. 

Continuous compliance or issuance at scale is critical to Sabre's vision for our travel retail market. For airlines, greater system and workflow automation will improve efficiency by eliminating repetitive tasks and synchronizing orders as a master record. One of our strategic priorities is maintaining travel integrity, which means ensuring a seamless travel experience throughout the entire journey.

Travelers will enjoy a streamlined experience, including greater control of their own experience through more self-service options, in addition to existing full-service help desk support. When travel plans change unexpectedly, travelers will be automatically notified, minimizing any inconvenience. Reaccommodation will be synchronized across all aspects of the trip with self-service capabilities available should the airline and/or traveler prefer.

Just as climbing mountains requires trust in your climbing partners, I believe that for airlines to realize their full revenue growth potential in tomorrow's commerce-driven travel ecosystem, they must build consumer trust. This will allow them to identify and monetize new opportunities made possible by offer-and-order-based retailing. 

You can learn more about Sabre's approach to smarter, bid-and-order-driven airline retail  here

You can read the  full article in English here .

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