Air New Zealand is exploring the use of
blockchain-based systems within its business.
Blockchain is being used globally to build
encrypted, shared platforms, providing a secure and efficient way
to track the exchange of goods or information.
Air New Zealand is looking at a number of
potential use cases for the distributed ledger technology
including cargo and baggage tracking, retail, distribution and
loyalty programme opportunities.
Air New Zealand Chief Digital Officer Avi Golan
said, "With its built-in efficiency and security, blockchain has
the potential to trigger huge innovation in travel, paving the way
for new business models and collaboration."
Air New Zealand has partnered with Swiss travel
platform Winding Tree, which is developing one of the world's first
travel marketplaces on blockchain to connect suppliers such as
airlines and hotels directly to sellers.
"While we are still exploring its benefits,
blockchain may offer a streamlined way to retail airfares and
ancillary products alongside our current channels. In removing
complexity from the sales chain, customers benefit from reduced
transactional costs, and airlines benefit from swift and secure
sharing of information," says Mr Golan.
Winding Tree Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Maksim Izmaylov said, "With a business-to-business marketplace system
powering blockchain-based travel booking transactions, startups
and companies will be able to gain direct access to travel service
providers' offerings. We are very excited to be partnering with Air
New Zealand, as it's an important step in bringing blockchain
technology to the travel industry and creating opportunity for
Air New Zealand has worked with a range of
leading technology partners to introduce innovations to enhance
the customer experience. These include its artificial intelligence
backed chatbot Oscar, who helps customers with queries online and
through the Air New Zealand mobile app, and its experiment with
the social robot Chip, who assisted customers with check in at
Sydney Airport earlier this year.
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