Innovative low-cost carrier Vueling successfully enters package travel market
Vueling Airlines is one of the largest European low-cost airlines and the innovative leader among them. Based in Barcelona, Spain, it maintains a hub in Barcelona and Rome, offering point to point and connection traffic. In 2017, Vueling was the most punctual low cost airline in Europe and the second most punctual airline overall in Europe. Founded in 2004 to meet travellers’ new demands for competitive flight offers and excellent service, the airline currently operates a fleet of 112 aircraft with flights to more than 130 destinations and is the largest Spanish airline.
Vueling is part of the IAG Group, along with British Airways and Iberia, the national carrier airlines of the United Kingdom and Spain respectively, along with Aer Lingus in Ireland. In 2017, the low cost long haul airline ‘Level’ has been founded as part of IAG group, which is operating out of Barcelona and fed by Vueling. Vueling has grown rapidly over the past few years and now ranks as one of the ten largest low-cost carriers in Europe.
As a low-cost airline, Vueling is constantly aiming to optimize yield management and increase the percentage of seats sold on its flights, in order to offer a competitive product portfolio with exceptional customer service. Flight offers are sold with and without baggage and travellers can book additional services separately. This flexibility is ideal for price-sensitive travellers and leisure travel packages. Tour operators can benefit significantly from this flexible flight portfolio to build attractive and cost-effective travel packages.
With the growing demand for dynamic tour operations, Vueling was looking to establish direct access to the European tour operator market and position itself as a valued partner to the major tour operators across Europe. Dynamic content, based on low fares, will drive sales opportunities, boost flight capacity and generate a win-win situation for the airline and the tour operators.
Since adopting Peakwork, Vueling now accesses the Player Hub leisure travel network, which includes some of the largest European tour operators. Ulla Siebke, Country Manager Germany, Austria and Switzerland at Vueling, explains their motivation:
“Vueling is growing in terms of flight routes and destinations all over Europe. Our biggest challenge is to increase revenue and loadfactors of our flights in a highly competitive environment. With Peakwork, we can provide tour operators with dynamic packaging including our lowest fares and attractive routes at no financial risk.”
Vueling delivers flight offers to Peakwork. With Peakwork’s data converter, these offers are converted to the unified EDF exchange data format. This format is used by all Peakwork network partners and allows the fast exchange, interpretation and processing within all partners’ systems. Vueling’s tour operator and distribution partners get access to all Vueling’s offers and benefit for both flight-only sales and dynamic packaging. Family fares have now just been added to the portfolio.
Flight offers are directly booked via the Peakwork Booking Hub which communicates directly with the airline’s booking API.
Vueling benefits from full flexibility in terms of distributed fares. Published fares for economy flights are transmitted to the network partners. The offer comprises fares with and without baggage, where the traveler can add baggage separately during the booking process or access an Optima fare including baggage and free seat reservation.
Ulla Siebke adds:
“Tour operators can offer their customers full flexibility in terms of baggage and other ancillary services. During the booking process, the customer decides when and how much baggage should be included. More components to facilitate the experience and booking process are in the pipeline and will be rolled out during 2018. Automation is the key development for future growth and performance.”
Peakwork’s Travelviewer, the booking system for travel agencies, also accesses the Vueling Flight Player and displays flight-only offers. These can be booked via handover to Vueling’s website with deep links to the agency website.
Vueling has achieved its goal of becoming a valued partner for the leading European tour operators. Major travel package suppliers, such as TUI, Thomas Cook, DER Touristik Group, Holidays.ch and Vakantiediscounter.nl, now offer travel packages that include Vueling flights. In this market sector, booking volumes multiply several times year on year representing several opportunities for growth. The airline can extend the offer of routes and destinations according to their distribution partners demand.