Ideaworks have written a good overview on what BA is doing in ancillary revenue with the interesting subtitle of Has British Airways fallen into a rabbit hole or embarked on an adventure of change? If your job would benefit from understanding what BA have been doing in terms of product innovation or ancillary revenue, then definitely take a look at the report.

I’ve met the author Jay Sorensen a few times in the past, and he’s managed to carve out a decent niche for himself in the field of airline ancillary revenue. He is offering two day on site workshops for airlines looking to understand how to move forward with their ancillary revenue strategy, and I imagine there would be quite a market for this. Despite all the attention on airline ancillary revenue in the past few years, I am seeing almost as many mistakes and missed opportunities by small to medium airlines as I was seeing lollies thrown to children from the floats at the Three Kings (aka 3 wise men) cabalgata parade I attended earlier this week! The larger airlines are far from perfect, but at least most that I know seem to be taking it seriously. In fact I just saw some great numbers from one carrier yesterday on their success at selling exit row seating via the website. The smaller ones, with some notable exceptions, seem to think it is all to difficult to implement. Hopefully Jay has some easy to implement first steps in the workshop he runs. I recall once in the past an airline telling me they set up hotels from a third party white label vendor on their website and only sold eight bookings in the first year – this seemed to really dent their confidence that ancillary revenue was for them.

At the cabalgata parade I saw numerous people with umbrellas turned upside down and held above their heads to catch all lollies and sweets that seemed to be raining from the sky. Catching ancillary revenue may not be that easy, but I know from experience that it as difficult to get right as some airlines seem to believe.

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