When legendary jazz musician Duke Ellington first performed this famous song way back in 1939 celebrating the newly opened East Brooklyn to Harlem subway line in New York, little would he know how the rail landscape would change.
It’s not the subway or North America, but with new high speed routes around the corner and the announcement of non-stop Eurostar services from London to Lyon and Marseilles starting next year, the demand for international rail is set to continue apace. It’s predicted that in 2020 long-distance passenger volumes in the UK will hit 239 million journeys annually¹. That’s a 30% jump on 2011 volumes.
Yet the booking experience remains fragmented and lagging behind the more seamless experience associated with air travel. The challenge remains of navigating different rail companies’ sales processes, as well as accessing real time availability and fare information. That’s why Amadeus is investing in rail technology to make international rail as easy to sell as any other mode of transport. We’re building the first rail global distribution system where all railways available can be sold in the same familiar and standardised way, across all sales channels around the world.
Amadeus Rail Display is our new solution to book international rail tickets, available within Amadeus Selling Platform. With a user-friendly graphical interface, full integration into your existing tools and processes – such as profiles, Passenger Name Record and mid/back office feeds – it makes booking rail easier, faster, and more efficient, saving 50% of the overall booking time!²
With standardised, end-to-end workflow from profile, searching and booking through to payment, ticketing and refunds it’s got everything you need at your fingertips with minimal training required. Compare up to 4 trips side by side in less than 1 minute. And with our launch partner Voyages-sncf you’ll get access to inter-European content from SNCF, Thalys, TGV Lyria and of course Eurostar with even more rail companies coming soon.
Demand for international rail is increasing for both business and leisure travel. It has become a viable alternative and complement to business travel that is centred on airports. International rail enthusiasts often cite the advantages it offers as; time saving, the ability to work on-board, city centre to city centre convenience and its green environmentally friendly credentials. And for the leisure traveller it opens up thousands of destinations throughout Europe bypassing airport pain points, free of air passenger taxes or extra baggage fees and offering a kaleidoscope of stunning scenery en route.
As the song said, if you miss the A Train you’ve missed the quickest way to Harlem. So don’t miss this opportunity to sell rail more quickly, more profitably and more efficiently.
² In house travel agent time trial tests.