Surge in electronic ticketing.
Wednesday, 2nd May 2007
Source : Abacus International
Abacus' level of online airline bookings passes the 60% mark - and more than 81% of all Abacus tickets are now ET-ready.

The 61.4% adoption for electronic ticketing (ET), during March 2007, was approaching double the 35.5% level of electronic ticketing recorded in the same month last year, said Abacus International President and CEO, Mr Don Birch.

"The surge in electronic ticketing is a positive indication towards the achievement of IATA's goal of 100% electronic ticketing by the end of 2007. The market is showing that it can adopt this cost-saving initiative at an accelerating rate and it will need to continue doing so to hit IATA's target," Mr. Birch said.

"E-tickets are not only more secure and convenient for customers, but they offer substantial cost benefits for airlines and travel agencies, saving approximately US$9 per ticket issued, so there is a motivation to adapt as fast as the airlines can prepare their systems and processes."

Abacus issued some 9.3 million e-tickets in 2006, reflecting a year-to-year increase of 94% from 2005 while the number of paper tickets issued has declined by 25% over the same period.

Regional markets such as India, South Korea (106%) year-on-year growth in March 2007, The Philippines (80%) and Thailand (93%) have demonstrated the highest levels of e-ticketing penetration, reflecting growth figures, while India recorded a notable 5,624% more e-tickets processed by Abacus in March 2007, than the corresponding month a year earlier. Other South Asian markets to gain (March 2007 over March 2006) were: Malaysia (62%Indonesia (57%), Singapore (29%). North Asia also chimed in strongly with the growth in e-ticketing with Hong Kong attaining 60% year-on-year growth in March, and Taiwan (25%).

International Air Transport Association (IATA) is currently striving for 100% e-ticketing by 31 December 2007, which is expected to save the industry up to US$3 billion annually as part of its ‘Simplifying the Business' programme to improve customer service and deliver industry savings of US$6.5 billion every year.

"As Asia's leading travel facilitator, Abacus is eager to support industry initiatives to enhance the business and travel experience for our customer airlines and agencies as well as today's traveller. Abacus is committed to strengthening and building relationships with local airlines to meet IATA's target of making air travel ticket-less by the end of 2007," Mr Birch said.

E-ticketing is a real-time paperless method for airlines and travel agents to issue tickets. Individual ticket information is stored within the airline's reservation system and can be retrieved and processed electronically, reducing the amount of paper ticket inventory and hassle in re-issuance of misplaced printed tickets.
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