When an airline has a disrupted flight due to whatever reason, so maybe a simple Delay or it may be a total Cancellation. Then the passengers are often left waiting in long queue's for servicecounters, sometimes even for hours, just waiting to get more information. We would like to inform all of those passengers as soon as any information is available, so we can bring down the waiting in line and service them asap and inform all passenger simultaniously. And maybe.. they could even wait for information in a more comfortable place, like a restaurant at the airport while enjoying a small refreshment. Let's create the best possible passenger centric experience in a bad situation!
What it does
We could make an automated communication flow which we start based upon the status of a flight ( in this example case Cancelled).
And in this communication flow we would keep the passenger up to date on their own personal mobile microsite, getting the latest information and if the guest needs they can easily choose to contact the airline rebooking staff.
So each passenger will get an unique private microsite, with their own personal content in it.
Their actual flight data / and rebooked flight data.
And they get information and vouchers on the services that they are eligable for like maybe a cup of coffee or other small refreshment, sometimes a hotel, shuttle bus service or a taxi to or from their hotel. And all the communication messages that are send to them will be send in a way that is most relevant to them based on optimal timing and location.
How I built it
First of all we would like to be retrieving the Passenger Name Lists and individual PNR's and the Flight Details with the actual flightstatus from Sabre.. So we can see which passengers will be affected (unfortunately this was not possible as these services are only avaiilable for airlines). Then.. if the flight gets officially really cancelled We will offer them accommodations to choose from using the Sabre API to book them ( not totally finished yet ) and if they need a local language description of the hotel to make a better choice then we get them from GIATA (build).
And when all data is set and the guest is at the hotel we use further location based communication, to make it more relevant. Like give them a message when we see they are still at the hotel, but it might be a good idea to get back to the airport for their onward / alternative flight ( which was obviously rebooked using the Sabre booking tools ;-)
During this entire process are using the IVR and send text messages options of Twillio to keep the passenger informed.
An alternative to having the information in the own microsite would be that we push the data into the tripcase app if the passenger would have an account and prefer that.
Challenges I ran into
Time was the biggest challenge ;-) we might have overbid a bit and made the project too big
We wanted to implement the IM tool of Twillio, so the passenger could chhat with the airline if they have further questions, but we could only get it up and running at local host and not get it working on the web server..
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
We wanted the passenger to have a preselected choice of hotels and we did it.. We got the main parts for 90% up and running and working fine. We nailed the use of the well documented Twillio API's We made good use of the content of the GIATA API
What I learned
Maybe if we would have taken some time to better prepare we would have finished all. and first start on all the html of the screens and add some dummy data end then after that try to connect the api's. If you want a fully clickable demo.
What's next for Stranded Flight Solutions passenger central
- Finish it so we can take it in production
- We would like to add a chatbot so we can automate the majority of the FAQ's and take the pressure away from the IM chat.
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