SITA and Yemen Airways, have announced that online booking will be introduced in Yemen for the first time in a country celebrated for the youth of its population - 70% under 25 years of age - which is fuelling growth in the use of the internet.Yemen Airlines flew 1.3 million passengers last year and is carrying increasing numbers of tourists. From August 2008, passengers will be able to book their tickets online using the SITA E-Commerce Platform, effectively bypassing the traditional global distribution systems (GDSs) and saving the airline significant fees.
Abdulkhalik Alkadi, Chairman of the Board of Yemen Airways, said “By moving some of our business to direct sales with our passengers we will see immediate cost savings. Our hope is to have 30% of our sales made on our website by the end of next year which could result in up to $600,000 savings.”
“The trend for online booking is well accepted” added Hani El-Assaad, SITA Regional Vice-President, Middle East and Turkey, “according to the latest SITA IT Trends Survey, worldwide online booking levels are reaching 35% and expectations are for further growth as countries such as Yemen come on stream.
“We have seen how Yemen Airways can adopt new technologies to serve both its domestic and international customers. The introduction of SITA E-Ticketing has been hugely successfully. E-tickets now count for over 90% of all tickets sold by the airline, making the 100% target set by IATA for May of this year truly achievable,” he added.
Such commitment to the adoption of efficient new processes bodes well for the introduction of online booking at the airline.