Travel Agents

Flight Centre launches new AI booking platform

Flight Centre Travel Group (FCTG) has launched a new online booking platform powered by AI for business travellers.

Meet Savi! Following the launch of FCTG’s pocket travel assistant app and AI-driven chatbot, Sam, Savi will officially be unveiled at the travel agency’s headline corporate travel event, Illuminate in Melbourne tonight.

Designed in collaboration with FCTG’s technology partner Serko, Savi is available exclusively for the customers of FCM Travel Solutions, Corporate Traveller, Stage and Screen and Campus Travel.

Speaking to Travel Weekly, James Kavanagh, executive general manager of FCTG’s corporate brand, said the platform is made to make the booking process easier.

“The platform is powered by AI insights, so the more you book on it the more it learns about you,” he said.

It actually speeds up the booking process whereby it makes it seem more frictionless.”

Kavanagh told us that FCTG’s 30 per cent market share in Australia means the engine will learn very quickly due to the sheer number of users. But he it won’t be used for leisure travel.

Savi dashboard

If you look at corporate travel, most companies already use online booking tools. Some of our blue chip companies are already hitting 70, 80 per cent online booking adoption, and that’s for a lot of the simple point to point stuff,” he said.

“AI services are working to help make them better but travel consultants are still very relevant with complex trips, when somebody needs support or if somebody needs to make changes.

“It’s basically disruption management.

“In the event of any major changes, support etc, that’s where the agent comes in. A lot of our VIP customers are still very much offline and they require that very personal one-to-one service as opposed to actually going online and booking.”

Illuminate will kick off tonight, at the iconic Melbourne Cricket ground with an opening panel session featuring the Flight Centre Travel Group founders Graham Turner and Geoff Harris who will be talking past, present and the future of the travel and broader business industries.

Kavanagh, who will be moderating the sessions, said the object of the day is to update, inform and inspire customers and industry suppliers with everything that’s new and innovative in the corporate travel sector.

“Topics will touch on the latest trends in corporate travel tools for customers, the hotel and aviation sector plus we also have a special keynote speaker in the afternoon, which we’ll be keeping under wraps until we welcome him on stage.”

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Travel Agents

Flight Centre lowers FY19 profit expectations as Aussie leisure operations struggle

by Huntley Mitchell

Work at Flight Centre? Well, you may want to grab a pillow to scream in before reading this.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Technology

Google Maps adds new filters to its expanding hotel search options

by Christian Fleetwood

Google Maps does not yet offer a filter for mini-bar drinks though, much to the disappointment of Travel Weekly’s editor.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Technology

Air passengers to be weighed before boarding to cut fuel costs

In a bid to reduce airline wastage, a tech start-up has come up with an interesting way to potentially cut fuel costs and emissions on flights.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Pilot incapacitated during Perth to Hong Kong flight

by Ali Coulton

The flight captain was forced to call upon crew and passengers for help after becoming out of breath and suffering from impaired vision.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Boeing reveals billion-dollar cost blowout from 737 MAX crisis

by Huntley Mitchell

It appears the order for a new ping pong table and Nespresso coffee machine at Boeing HQ will be put on hold after this dour financial news.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Sri Lanka tourism speaks out about attacks, as death toll is downgraded

In light of the devastating bombings that killed hundreds of people in Sri Lanka on Easter Sunday, the country’s tourism board has released an update for travellers.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Flavour of the Week

Didn’t get much done this week? Feel free to live vicariously through these high achievers.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

“Business as usual” in Honiara following civil unrest: Tourism Solomons CEO

It appears everything is back to normal in the Solomon Islands capital, after the election of the country’s PM spurred violent protests.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Agent wrap: Club Med breaks famil record, name Travelmarvel’s new ship + more!

If the thought of going back to regular-sized working weeks makes you as petrified as it makes us, take solace in these pictures of agents having a kick-ass time overseas.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Aloha Friday wrap

How can you make your short week even shorter? Use this Aloha Friday wrap to convince yourself you’re exploring the Hawaiian Islands.

Share

CommentComments

Events

Where to play two-up around Australia

Industry punters looking to try their luck while paying homage to those who served in all wars, conflicts and peacekeeping operations this Anzac Day, look no further.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Six Hawaii travel hacks

Get the most out of your holiday on the Hawaiian Islands.

Share

CommentComments