For many travellers, arriving at a destination airport is the easy part - working out how to get to the city centre once there is often an altogether different story. Rather than being an integrated part of the planned journey, buying a city transfer can be an anxious, time-consuming exercise, especially in an unfamiliar place and in a strange language.
How much easier would it be to book this part of the journey with the flight and the hotel? From today that is possible, as a new airport express module has been embedded in Amadeus Selling Platform allowing travel agencies to easily add an airport express train ticket to a traveller’s flight or hotel room at the moment of booking, bringing the ‘door-to-door experience’ one step closer to reality.
Airport express providers run fast and convenient transport links between airports and city centres and with this in mind, Heathrow Express is the first to implement this service in the UK, France, Germany, Scandinavia and Russia, with global roll-out expected in 2016. Airtrain at Brisbane Airport has also signed an agreement with Amadeus, and will be bookable next year.
As a travel agent books a flight to or from cities with airport express services, an intuitive pop-up bar notifies them of availability and, as a result, agents can advise their customers accordingly. In just two clicks, an airport express ticket can be added that easily transports them to or from the city centre in just minutes.
Fraser Brown, Heathrow Express Director said: “We’re excited to be the first airport express service to integrate ticket sales in the Amadeus booking system, and offer passengers a seamless booking process, contributing to what we hope will be the best airport experience in the world. Using the Amadeus system helps us reach a large, worldwide customer base offering more people the convenience of booking their Heathrow Express tickets to and from central London at the same time as their flight or hotel.”
This new module brings travellers more choice when booking via their travel agency, as they can select a fast, convenient and sustainable travel option that takes them closer to their final destination. As the airport express booking is fully integrated in the PNR, this means the traveller has one complete itinerary for their journey.
Chris Basche, CEO, at Brisbane Airport’s Airtrain, said “Airtrain is excited about the potential distribution that Amadeus’ Airport Express module provides. The module will be easy to use for both Australian and international travel agents to book Airtrain to access Brisbane City and the Gold Coast. Research shows that Airtrain’s primary customer market is inbound visitors, and Amadeus’ Airport Express distribution will enable this market to be ticketed prior to arriving in Brisbane. We are greatly anticipating launching shortly and working with Amadeus to actively promote the new product”
“Our new airport express tool brings us one step closer to integrating rail into the travel ecosystem and reaching our vision for a truly seamless, door-to-door travel experience. Having on board some of the leading airport express services across the globe unlocks a brand new offering for our travel agency community that allows them not just to satisfy customers’ needs, but drive loyalty” commented Thomas Drexler, Head of Rail & Ground Travel at Amadeus. “We are already working towards extending this tool to other Amadeus channels, and look forward to working with new airport express partners that bring the city centre closer to the traveller.”