Jan Buyckx, global sourcing strategy manager travel channels with Amadeus, was in New Zealand last week and, along with general manager New Zealand and pacific Andrew Gay, and senior manager, sir sourcing strategy APAC travel channels Foong-Har Moo, met with travel agency chain and TAANZ executives. ‘It can be challenging when a new technology enters the work floor of agents on top of the existing choices,’ says Buyckx. ‘So there is a need to both listen to agents and to educate agents.’ It was announced last week that Qantas would be one of the ‘early joiners’ of the Amadeus NDC-X programme, but Buyckx says the major details of a solution that changes the way content is booked and sourced (including through NDC) will be released early next year. ‘We will build and add functionality towards the end of the year next year and present a scaleable and usable product.’
Buyckx points out that NDC is a communication protocol – an API (application programming interface) with the definition still on-going, based on XML. ‘Amadeus works closely with IATA, airlines and travel agencies on the evolution of NDC and our vision is to fully integrate IATA NDC. We are committed to make NDC work for the entire industry. But we need to be realistic, this is a long journey. He says agents should look at NDC as yet another way to source content and nobody should feel threatened by it. ‘They can’t afford to miss out on content.’ Gay says there was an early misconception that airlines didn’t want to pay GDS and that was why NDC was born. ‘That’s not what this is about,’ he says.