Work has had me flat out like a lizard drinking since I got back to Madrid, but yesterday I saw so many headlines related to ancillary revenue and other things direct channel that I have not had time to properly consume even half the information. Here is a quick roundup of things that came across my desk in the last 24 hours that caught my attention.

Firstly, seeing this interview with Bobby Healy from Car Trawler reminds me of the Andrew Dice Clay line from his one of his live comedy recordings where he says after the audience recites the puchlines of his old jokes, “OK, so I see you’ve been doing your homework, but that’s why I’ve come prepared with some new stuff.” He is still using my old data on purchase lead times, but I know Bobby was in Miami last week when I gave everyone the new improved data. My question is this; when I was doing my opening keynote speech where were you? I saw him present later during that conference and I also saw him present almost two years ago in Berlin; I love the fact that he is so passionate about his product. Can’t remember ever speaking to him, but he seems like an interesting guy and someone I’d be happy to have a beer with – if only he would start using my new data in his sales pitch!

Secondly Andrew Compart from Aviation Week gave me a great write up in an article titled Airlines Focus On Ancillary Revenue. The “five times” quote was actually referring only to destination content, but maybe Andrew is right and the opportunities are that big in other areas of ancillary revenue as well.

Thirdly, FACUA, the consumer protection agency in Spain has lodged an official complaint against six airlines.

The airlines accused of making money though their customer service ‘phone lines are: Iberia, Air Europa, Easyjet, Ryanair, Spanair and Vueling.

Not sure how much teeth this organization actually has, but it is hardly great publicity for the airlines involved. I’d imagine there is quite a bit of money at stake if they are forced to withdraw these phone lines, but it would be great for people selling tools to take manual work out of the call centres. I wonder who that could be?

Fourthly, easyJet announced another accommodation partnership, this time with Interhome who rent out holiday villas. Unlike earlier this week, no mention from what I read regarding the branding issues.

Fifthly, I was reading an article on Crane Loyalty System by Hitit. Not too much insight here, as it is more of a marketing pitch around better use of customer data, but interesting for me as I’m looking at building a link to this system for an airline customer of mine to do automatic points deduction. The way some airlines are doing this at the moment is almost fully manual which leads to errors and inconsistencies (eg. one operator types LAX and the next types Los Angeles and then both appear on the  member points redemption statement).

Finally, at one point yesterday it looked like all the email subscribers to this blog had unsubscibed en masse. Then I saw that one of the gurus of travel industry blogging, Tim Hughes was facing the same issue, and I breathed a big sigh of relief. Thanks for reading.

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