Singapore Airlines (SIA) Dubai offers increased functionality to its UAE trade partners via the KrisConnect Programme, as part of the airline’s initiative to improve overall customer experience. Ryan Yeoh, General Manager, Gulf & Middle East, Singapore Airlines shares with TRAVTALK.
Q What is the Kris-Connect Programme and why is Singapore Airlines launching it?
KrisConnect enhances the capability of communications between SIA and its trade partners, offering travel agents new functions which previously could only be performed by the airline directly, as well as additional utilities and products to improve the overall customer experience. This expanded range of functionalities includes the ability to sell SIA ancillary products and value adds, product bundles, and customised offers, as well as access to rich content, loyalty privileges, and more. KrisConnect makes these functions available to external parties via IATA’s NDC standard, as well as SIA’s and other proprietary Application Programme Interfaces (APIs).
Personalised service and being customer-focused have long been the hallmarks of Singapore Airlines. We are launching the KrisConnect programme to extend these values beyond our traditional touch points, and to develop a deeper relationship with our partners to improve the overall SIA customer experience on their platforms.
Q What are the benefits to agencies who get onboard with KrisConnect?
The KrisConnect Programme enables the transmission of richer and more personalised content, thereby enhancing the selling proposition of agents to customers, which results in a better booking experience.
The KrisConnect value proposition is encapsulated in three main pillars. The first pillar is price – agents will have access to KrisConnect preferential market and promotional fares, which will be made exclusively available through KrisConnect channels. The second is fare bundles, which are not available in the traditional GDS channels currently. In KrisConnect, agents can offer customised fare bundles to better address the needs of our joint customers, such as no-bag fares for corporate travellers. Third is ancillaries – agents will be able to offer value adds to customers to enhance and personalise their journey, such as seat selection, excess baggage, insurance, etc.
Q How can agents connect and get access to the KrisConnect programme?
There are four ways to connect to SIA’s NDC (KrisConnect) content.
- The first avenue is to connect directly to SIA, without any intermediary.
- Another way is through AGENT360, which is SIA’s NDC-enabled Travel Agency Portal. With AGENT360, no system integration is required from the agency and it does not involve usage costs. AGENT360 will launch in February 2021.
- A third way for agents to connect is through their GDS service providers, such as Amadeus, Sabre, and Travelport.
- Lastly, agents can also connect through NDC Technology Partners (aggregators), such as TPConnects, Travelfusion, Verteil Technologies, TravelNDC, Aaron Group, PKfare, and many others.
Q How long does it take to complete the agency onboarding process?
The process varies by the chosen mode of connection. With SIA’s AGENT360 portal, because no system integration effort is required from the agency, agents can access SIA NDC content once their registration to Agent 360 is approved, which normally only takes three to five days.
For connections through a technology provider, the onboarding process usually takes between one to three months, depending on the technology partner.