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Building trust in travel retailing at ATPCO’s Elevate 2024

June 13, 2024
By Andrew Sheivachman
Categories Innovation

It takes a community of like-minded innovators to move the travel industry forward.

Spotnana leaders were on stage at ATPCO’s Elevate 2024 event to discuss how modern technology and tight collaboration with global airlines create unparalleled travel experiences.

Here’s how Spotnana is helping to build transparency and provide better experiences to travelers, travel managers, and suppliers.

Trust and transparency

What a traveler sees during the travel search process is key to building trust. If they don’t see the airlines they like or the fares they expect, they are likely to shop around and book on another platform.

Spotnana is designed to display all content information clearly to travelers, including complex fare rules that govern how tickets can be exchanged and canceled.

“At Spotnana, we believe in trust and transparency,” said Mrigya Agarwal, Spotnana’s Head of NDC Integrations. “During the shopping process, for example, we make sure that all of the fare rules are easily shown to the traveler so they can make informed decisions. We also show if you can use unused credits for a particular fare. We go a step further using AI tools and Chat GPT to parse more complex fare rules on no-shows or changes on the same day, so all this is displayed to the traveler. This helps us not only build trust with our customers but make sure the traveler is not contacting us all the time because the information is all there for them.”

An image of Spotnana's flight shopping interface.

Spotnana’s flight shopping interface clearly displays fare rules and amenity details.

A focus on clarity for travelers has benefits for airlines, as well. Spotnana can display airline content exactly as the airline desires including unique attributes that are part of NDC-enhanced offers. Airlines can leverage feedback to improve their services, provide specific offers to travelers, and address pain points that travel managers may have with how content is displayed or what types of fares are available.

“Here at Spotnana we are NDC-first, data-first, and AI-first,” said Agarwal. “Because of NDC, airlines can get real-time feedback on who the customer and traveler is. Based on that, they can change dynamic pricing, change bundles, and send more personalized offers to the travelers.”

Benefits of modern retailing technology

Content fragmentation has long been a major issue for travelers, since legacy corporate booking technology features limitations on displaying content from different distribution channels in the same place.

Spotnana has been built from the ground up to incorporate content from a variety of sources in a clear interface from travelers across both desktop and mobile.

“We were fortunate that we started in 2020 when content was so fragmented that we built the platform making certain decisions,” said Manish Nagpal, Spotnana’s Head of Engineering – Air. “The philosophy is to bring simplicity, freedom, and trust to the traveler. If you go to Amazon, you know the content is going to be there at the right price point. You buy it with confidence because you know you can return it or exchange it without talking to anybody. That’s the same experience and trust we’re talking about at Spotnana. 

“It’s not easy because you need to make technical and commercial decisions to build that trust. Commercially, we made a conscious decision not to take any GDS incentives so we can display all the GDS, NDC, direct, and low-cost carrier content unbiased on the same screen.”

Before Spotnana, Nagpal helped architect NDC solutions for airlines at Farelogix. Airlines today are focused on providing personalized recommendations and offers through direct distribution channels by leveraging rich traveler data and predictive analytics.

Now on the travel retailer side, Nagpal better understands the importance of seamless ticket servicing for travelers and their travel programs.

“When I was on the other side building technology for airlines, I used to wonder why [corporate] customers needed three or four exchanges,” said Nagpal. “Servicing matters, and you have different scenarios in the corporate world. Most of the time [frequent] flyers are on the upgrade list; can you exchange that? [What] if they upgrade with points? Our whole mission is to have self-service.”

Rich content with Routehappy

We were thrilled to have the opportunity to speak at the ATPCO Elevate conference. Spotnana has integrated ATPCO’s Routehappy content to provide a best-in-class shopping experience for travelers. Routehappy Universal Product Attributes (UPAs) describe fares, products, and services and provide visual content that is presented in a seamless way inside Spotnana’s booking experience. Amenities data makes it easy for shoppers to compare fares, and Universal Ticket Attributes (UTAs) display benefits and restrictions by fare.

Spotnana’s mission as a Travel-as-a-Service platform is to give corporations, agencies, suppliers, and technology providers the power to deliver unparalleled travel experiences. The grid layout used by Spotnana’s shopping experience helps elevate the details airlines want to promote alongside the information travelers need to make informed buying decisions.

“We want to build trust with users as well as airlines,” said Agarwal. “What do users want? They want content. So we want to show them all the content, all the cabins, all the fares on one screen with all the fare rules and information they need. What do airlines want? They want to showcase their distinct products and offerings. The grid layout helps us to attain both the goals.”

To learn more about how Spotnana is building trust in travel, get a demo today.