Making the most of the undoubted opportunity of extracting greater sales from the airline’s website is a top priority for new British Airways chief executive Willie Walsh. He plans significant investment in the airline’s website with the emphasis on dynamic packaging. “Our recent refocus on ancillary revenues is paying dividends,” he says.

Dynamic packaging is where customers are invited to buy other elements of their travel – hotels, car hire, insurance, tours etc – at the same time as they buy the airline ticket, rather than simply clicking through to another supplier’s website to buy the product. “This is where travel companies put together deals,” says BA’s chief information officer Paul Coby. “It is as exciting and revolutionary as our original calendar-led selling.”

One of the main issues is how much discount to offer travellers for each new purchase. “You need to revenue manage all the extra things you are selling,” says Coby. BA already has some dynamic packaging on its website, with opportunity to upgrade to other fare classes, for example. “The take-up is running twice as much as the business case,” he says. Over the coming months BA will be promoting its dynamic packaging and further products will be added in 2006.

EasyJet is another carrier pushing on with the concept. It added insurance into the flight booking process earlier this year and has signed a deal with Europcar to offer car hire. The car hire price is calculated in the background while the passenger is booking the flight and offered once the flight has been selected.

Source: Airline Business