Today, as only ten per cent of bus, ferry and rail tickets are booked digitally, the ground transportation sector remains the weak link in a travel ecosystem, where airline, hotel and destination experiences can be easily planned, booked and serviced online.
Unlike airlines and hotels, the majority of ground transport operators in the key Latin America and Asia Pacific markets have not been able to easily access technology, meaning they still run using pen and paper or Excel spreadsheets, which is slowing the growth of e-commerce in the sector.
In response, Bookaway Group has unveiled its strategy to change this situation, paving the way for seamless ground travel experiences, by empowering local ground transport operators with easy-to-deploy transport management systems.
The ultimate aim is to make booking ground transportation as easy as booking a hotel or a flight.
A transportation management system is equivalent to a passenger service system used by an airline or property management systems common to hotels.
It is the beating heart of any bus or ferry operator, managing the availability of an operator’s seat inventory, releasing it for sale, and setting prices based on booking requests arriving through digital and offline sales channels.
It also organises operational aspects like maintenance, routes, GPS tracking, staff schedules, financial reporting, and analytics.
Adding a TMS is the fastest way for operators to move ticket sales online and grow sales.
The Bookaway Group also unveiled the acquisition today of Sisorg, a prominent Latin America software-as-a-service travel management system, which was completed in July last year.
With a team of more than 25 developers working on its travel management system products, the group is the only ground transport marketplace offering local TMS solutions in different regions of the world, enabling operators to sell online.
Noam Toister, chief executive of the Bookaway Group, explained: “We want to bring every bus, ferry, and train seat online to create an efficient marketplace with a modern digital experience for travellers.
“But we can’t do that if an operator is using pen and paper.
“That’s why we’re giving operators in Asia and Latin America a simple travel managemet system they can easily adopt to begin selling online, with Bookaway Group or any other marketplace.”