Tech role in flight dis­rup­tion break­through

Travel Bulletin - - TECHNOLOGY -

Air­lines are on the verge of a tech­no­log­i­cal break­through in the quest to re­duce flight dis­rup­tions, es­ti­mated to cost as much as $60 bil­lion an­nu­ally ac­cord­ing to a new re­port com­mis­sioned by Amadeus. The study, Shap­ing the Fu­ture of Air­line Dis­rup­tion Man­age­ment, was pre­pared by air­line IT con­sul­tancy T2RL and says the dis­rup­tion caused by bad weather, nat­u­ral dis­as­ters and strike ac­tion costs the travel in­dus­try up to 8% of its global rev­enues. Com­pound­ing the prob­lem, the re­port says dis­rup­tions “spread vi­rally through­out the travel ecosys­tem” as the knock-on ef­fect of late planes and crews cre­ates fur­ther can­cel­la­tions and de­lays, of­ten from a rel­a­tively mi­nor ini­tial prob­lem. The re­port’s au­thor, T2RL prin­ci­pal con­sul­tant Ira Ger­shkoff, said air­lines were head­ing for a break­through thanks to tech­no­log­i­cal de­vel­op­ments and in­creased in­vest­ment in tack­ling dis­rup­tion man­age­ment. “There is ev­ery rea­son to be­lieve the his­toric chal­lenge of re-rout­ing planes, crew and pas­sen­gers dur­ing dis­rup­tion will fi­nally be ad­dressed over the next sev­eral years,” Ger­shkoff said. “Af­ter a pe­riod of limited in­vest­ment, the will has once again re­turned across air­line board­rooms, driven in large part by the need to de­liver re­li­ably on an­cil­lary prod­uct sales,” he said. “What’s im­por­tant is that ser­vice providers across the en­tire in­dus­try are col­lab­o­rat­ing to mit­i­gate the im­pact on the trav­eller.” The re­port says IT com­pa­nies are ac­tively de­vel­op­ing so­lu­tion pro­to­types and at­tempt­ing to place them with air­lines in­ter­ested in be­ing launch cus­tomers. Oth­ers are im­prov­ing the pro­duc­tiv­ity of air­line flight con­trollers and field man­agers. “Dur­ing the re­search of this pa­per, ev­ery­one we talked to ex­pressed some de­gree of ex­cite­ment that this long­stand­ing prob­lem for air­lines and trav­ellers is fi­nally be­ing ad­dressed,” Ger­shkoff said.

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