Blockchain enabling the future of travel
Will blockchain break down the last barriers to innovation and enable the future of travel? Great news is that airlines and airports have started to pay attention:
Air New Zealand has announced on 23rd November a new partnership with decentralized travel platform Winding Tree to explore applications of blockchain technology in the airline's business. First targets are to improve the security and efficiency of services that include baggage tracking and ticket booking. According to Avi Golan , chief digital officer for Air New Zealand, the airline is also eyeing blockchain elsewhere, citing use cases such as loyalty programs and distribution.
Earlier in October, the Lufthansa Group announced a partnership with Winding Tree, "...to allow all innovative partners to access its offerings via a decentralized, non-brokered travel marketplace" Markus Binkert , Lufthansa Group's Vice President of Distribution and Economic Management.
"Blockchain allows us to create an open market for travel that, for the first time ever, does not require trust in a third party or in its creator", says Pedro Renaud Anderson , Founder at Winding Tree. Pedro will do a presentation about the future of travel at think future - Hamburg Aviation Conference 8 - 9 February 2018.
Other airlines too are eyeing blockchain technology for use cases across the industry.
In July, Russian airline S7 revealed it was using the ethereum blockchain for the issue of air tickets. The platform is designed to reduce settlement times between between the airline and the agent, which today take around two weeks. It further strives to streamline the payment process by deducting the agent commission automatically after ticket sales to reflect the final receipt.
Air France announced in October that it is exploring the tech to track workflows within its aircraft maintenance systems.
Additionally, earlier this month, air transport IT firm SITA released a white paper detailing how airlines and airports could use smart contracts for shared control of data. the research was done along with British Airways and Heathrow, Geneva and Miami International airports.
The start up Winding Tree is a blockchain-based decentralized open-source travel distribution platform. It changes the game of how to work with third parties and makes travel cheaper for the end user and more profitable for the suppliers. No centralized control means no exorbitant transaction fees and no barriers for entry. Winding Tree allows small companies to compete with big players, finally bringing innovation back into the travel industry.