In a major development, which is likely to augment IndiGo’s presence in the global marketplace, the domestic carrier has tied up with one of the world’s foremost GDS provider, Travelport. The move will help create more visibility and consequently more business for IndiGo. Also, with the full range of airline products on display, it could rake up more revenues for the carrier with larger sales of its ancillary products. We bring you excerpts of the speech made by Aditya Ghosh, President and whole-time Director, Indigo as he talked about the significance of this agreement and its likely impact on the future of travel and tourism in India.
IndiGo gains global distribution of content without traditional costs associated with marketing outreach
We work with a lot of partners’, travel agents and corporate customers, both in the domestic and the international market. So, tying up with Travelport is a logical extension of that distribution strategy. So, with this agreement with Travelport, IndiGo gains global distribution of its content via Travelport’s presence across over 68,000 online and offline travel agents worldwide. IndiGo’s decision to call Travelport its strategic distribution partner will now allow IndiGo’s customers more choice, and provide IndiGo access to a wider segment of corporate customers and travel agencies in India and overseas. Without incurring, and that is the important part, any additional cost of expanding its own sales and marketing teams, or the traditional costs associated with participating in the global distribution platform using old style industry platform.
Partnership with Travelport expands IndiGo’s global reach while maintaining its low-cost space
The LCC model has evolved over time based on customer demand across various geographies. While direct distribution remains an important model of distribution for IndiGo, this new partnership allows IndiGo to reach new customers, both in India and international markets. This is not unusual for LCCs and we have seen others do it, too, through Travelport – including Ryanair and EasyJet in Europe. IndiGo will be able to extend its distribution through travel agents, throughout the world, through this agreement while maintaining its low-cost space in order to reach new customer segment.
IndiGo’s content will now remain available through Travelport via real-time external API link rather than traditional methods, often favoured by legacy network carriers – and still have their fares and ancillary products displayed in exactly the same way.
IndiGo will also benefit from distribution their branded fares and ancillary content by Travelport’s travel merchandising, making it possible for travel agents to see pictures and product descriptions related to IndiGo fare products and compare the branded products side-by-side on the same screen, directly from the availability of the inventory. They will be able to do bookings of ancillaries for their customers, including excess baggage, meals and seat selection, lounge access and things like that. Initially, IndiGo’s fares and ancillary revenues will be available in India and then it will be rolled out in a phased approach over 2017.
The agreement makes every travel agent a product expert, will help them gain workflow efficiency
With the ability to differentiate its value proposition to customers, IndiGo is empowering each agent to be a product expert on the airline sales offering. For the first time, travel agents will have access to competitive content from IndiGo, fully integrated into their preferred workflow. The availability of the content by Travelport’s travel commerce platform provides travel agents with workflow efficiency gains, for sharping in booking content and also allows them to offer customers greater flexibility, choice, and access to low-cost fares from a single aggregated fare display.
IndiGo’s content will be available through all Travelport’s point of sales solutions, including Travelport’s universal API. This means that all the travel agents who use Travelport will have full access to IndiGo’s content. The functionality and the content will be the same as IndiGo’s current market practice for agency distribution, and importantly there is no channel pricing differential, so it is not like we are slapping out a fee for agents to be able to use this channel.
We are very excited about it, because it is yet another important step in our journey to realise the dream to establish a large, reliable and consistent air transportation network in our country, and the region that allow tens of millions of people to chase their dream and opportunities every year.