SNCF, France’s primary rail provider of local and long-distance passenger and freight services, has signed a strategic agreement with Amadeus.SNCF will expand its availability in the Amadeus system to travel agencies across Europe. SNCF can now be booked and ticketed using Amadeus in the UK, and will become available in Belgium, Luxembourg and Switzerland at the end of January. Agencies in Italy and the Netherlands will be able to book SNCF during first quarter 2007.
“France is one of the most visited destinations in the world, and being able to book SNCF rail tickets from outside France is crucial for us in offering our customers an excellent service. Bringing this content into Amadeus helps streamline the booking process by making it quicker and easier for our travel agents to book, and hence improves productivity,” says Guido Mertens, Thomas Cook Belgium.
Travel agencies across Europe will have access to an intuitive solution that allows the user to quickly compare schedules and fares thanks to seamless access, as well as real-time sell and confirmation. In addition when booking on TGV with certain city-pairs, agents will have access to a graphical coach and seat-map display.
“To encourage rail providers to sell their content internationally and to meet the trend of environmentally friendly transport, Amadeus has been able to provide a solution where providers’ fares and availability are displayed in a seamless and straight forward manner. Our objective is to continue to increase travel agents’ access to new content across more countries,” explains Albert Pozo, Managing Director, Travel Services & Leisure, Amadeus. “At Amadeus, we want to make sure that we continue to offer relevant content for rail, which carries over 26 billion passengers a year worldwide, averaging four train trips a year per person*.”