Middle East travellers ready for e-ticketing


Passengers who fly with airlines based in the Middle East are willing to purchase tickets on the Internet, according to a survey undertaken by IBM on behalf of a group of Arab airlines.

Over 40 per cent of passengers surveyed on flights with Middle East carriers said that they were prepared to use the Web to buy travel.

The majority stated that they had already purchased or researched travel online, and nearly 80 per cent have online access, either at home, at work or both.

IBM surveyed 2,400 passengers as part of a wide-ranging e-business strategy consulting assignment for a group of airlines under the auspices of the Arab Air Carriers Organisation (AACO).

"The IBM report shows that adopting e-business through a managed change programme will create benefits for Arab airlines and their customers, including cost savings, productivity improvements, shorter decision times and deeper customer relationships," said AACO secretary general Abdul Wahab Teffaha.

Recommended steps towards maximising these benefits are:

  • Achieving the momentum to change business processes and practices to fit with the electronic world;

  • Building the infrastructure necessary for growth in business to consumer e-commerce;

  • Ensuring that Arab airlines are represented on the major global travel portals and on the fast-growing Arab regional portals;

  • Adopting a thorough, phased approach to providing e-business capability to all employees; and

  • Creating a strategy for embracing business-to-business e-commerce, focusing on strategic sourcing, e-procurement and the accompanying process redesigns.

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