Airline Retailing, where do we go from here?

July 13, 2023

As Airline Retailing gains traction, there are more questions than answers, particularly regarding the transition path and its return on investment.

During the IATA Airline Retail forum, Globant team of experts shared the views and experience transitioning Tier 1 Airlines to complete Order and Offer-centric architectures in line with the IATA proposed domains. Tier1 Airlines have initiated their transition, with some already ahead of the pack with total orders and offers-centric architectures deployed but relying on the Passenger Service System (PSS). This shift in paradigm has presented several challenges for players in the industry.

What we have learned from partnering and building their architectures and systems is that Airline Retailing is a transformational endeavor that fundamentally changes the way Airlines operate and do business, and when done right, the results are not just positive but an enabler and an accelerator for other lines of businesses to flourish.

It is also true that airlines should only plan for the long term with intermediate target states where not only the return on investment is achieved in shorter iterations, but the transformation process has time to settle in and gain traction within the organization. 

In the end, technology is business, so moving forward, the digital space has to be tackled by both technology and business in unison. To work around the uncertainty, Pablo advises an iterative approach should be taken where Airlines do not commit to a vendor lock-in situation by deploying an “out of the box” solution that is yet to be proven and might not be suitable for each client.

 From my perspective, Own your Offer, Order, and Data domains and gain the freedom to adapt so you can maneuver your transition path at your own pace and pivot as you measure each step’s success.

A phased transition path such as this one shown below should help reduce the risk and capture value in short iterations, where client’s can balance the investment budget, learn and adapt.


The starting point is crucial to determine the first step. Asking first some questions to decide the best way to move forward:

  • Is your organization aiming to achieve a customer-centric hyper-personalized journey? Start with a personalized pricing experience.
  • Are you looking for a long-term transition? Start by securing interoperability with legacy systems along the transition.
  • Are you looking to increase your transaction value in the short term? Start with improving your upsell and cross-sell
  • Is your organization struggling with frictionless servicing? Empower your digital self-servicing for passengers first.
  • Are you in an intense vendor lock-in situation? Reduce your PSS dependency by removing it from the critical path of your core projects.

Bottom line, you can achieve all of those as you transition and capture the early value that goes beyond increasing sales:

  • Build digital talent and adopt a digital culture in the process to future-proof your business
  • Gain insights with a customer-centric approach with order lifecycle
  • Augment marketing and remarketing strategies
  • Secure a path of coexistence with legacy implementation

Airline Retailing is an excellent opportunity for Airlines to differentiate themselves among the competition and enable a new way of doing business by deep diving into the digital space. It is paramount that Airlines look for the proper guidance and embrace the opportunity to make the best out of their transition path.

Visit our Airlines Reinvention Studio for more information on Globant’s aviation business solutions and specialized teams.

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The Airlines Studio leverages our cross industry expertise to help a highly competitive and regulated industry reinvent. We drive digital transformation by putting the passenger experience front-and-center in all strategies to boost business