By Martin Kelly

QANTAS has quietly launched Dynamic Packaging on its main website, giving the booking option a much-coveted flash advertisement on its home page.

It’s a significant strategic move for the aviation giant which has enormous success in selling airline tickets online but has been unable to boost hotel and package holiday sales through its hugely popular website.

In fact, Qantas Holidays revenue – which to a large extent depends on accommodation – has slipped over the past two years due to changing consumer travel spending patterns.

But the new Manager of IT Strategy at Qantas Holidays, Grant Swinbourne, who has moved across from Jetstar, says the launch of Dynamic Packaging marks a change in approach.

“Its visibility signals that we are going to be increasingly focussed on things like Dynamic Packaging at Qantas,” Swinbourne says.

“It’s not seen as the be-all and end-all but part of a broader picture at the company.”

Swinbourne says he is happy with the launch, although it’s still early days.

“We didn’t want to go out with a big bang and have a problem with it,” he says.
“All in all, the product is working quite nicely and the bookings are coming through.”

The system was developed by TravelBox and accesses inventory though the Calypso Wholesale Travel Management System.

Swinbourne says Qantas is still using the Ready Rooms system to sell accommodation on its site. Sales through Ready Rooms increased by 60% in the 12 months June 30, 2007.

Meanwhile, Qantas Holidays profit before tax increased $2m over last financial year to $47m. However, this is still well under the 04/05 result of $64m.

"The continued trend of consumers to unbundle domestic and point to point international travel resulted in lower volumes, although these have been offset by a recovery in key outbound destinations including Thailand and Hong Kong, stronger inbound and a growth in reseller volumes," Qantas said in its annual results announcement.

Travel Trends: August 16, 2007

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