The charts were fairly resourceful but normally ended up with double bookings. As the demand for travel grew reservation departments were introduced, with tour operators and airlines using computers they developed their own system. The systems were linked to travel agencies and they could make bookings in their office. They were special systems called view data. The use of the Internet for booking holidays and flights is growing rapidly.Internet bookings can be credited to low-cost airlines, as they educated customers in how to book quickly and easily using the Internet and rewarded them with discounts for doing so. Now that customers have the increased confidence and knowhow they book all areas of their holidays online and in effect make their own packages.
Travel agencies will have to redefine their role as this trend continues. Internet bookings are not the only kind of technological development to take place, so is self-check in at the airports and online check- in for airlines.Self check-in at airports is a service available to passengers where they can use a kiosk to choose their own seat and print their own boarding passes, they can then go to fast bag drop and leave their hold baggage, if they do not have hold baggage then they can go straight to the boarding gate. Online check-in for airlines is when a passengers can go onto there chosen airline website and follow the instructions on there to then choose their seat and print off their boarding passes from the comfort of their own home.Most airlines offer this service to customers 24 hours before airport check- in to save time and reduce queues at the check in desk. Advances in transport The giant airplane the Airbus A380 is a double-deck, wide-body, four-engine airliner and is the largest passenger airliner in the world, it has had such an impact on travel, travel agents had to update on facilities offered on board the aircraft and it changes from airline to airline.Travel agents have to keep on top of other developments in air travel too, for example in 2006 British Airways spent ? 100 million on overhauling long haul business class.
There are two airlines one is Maxjet and the other is Eos, both only offer business class flights operated between Stansted and New York. The development of the channel tunnel rail link extension takes high-speed trains into St Pancras. It only takes a couple of hours now to get to Paris or Brussels.And so demand for Eurostar services has increased. Travel agents have found it easier to sell business travel to customers as new features such as e-mail access, DVD players and mobile phone use on planes has become available. Travel agents need to keep up with changes in road a sea transport also, this means making themselves aware of changes in coach and ferry services. And example of this would be making sure they are aware of the improved services for disabled travelers.
National Express now offer services to enable disabled travelers to get to airports. Communication Methods Reservation Systems themselves are a way of communicating with suppliers for travel agents, as they prevent hours of being on the phone making an enquiry with tour operators or airlines. The TravelCat system allows interaction with customers online. Where travel agents are using online technology to sell their products, it is important to provide their customers with support and so this means having a phone contact available.