Kenya Airways flying high as ‘The Pride of Africa’

Henry Obare

Head of IS Development, Kenya Airways

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The motto of Kenya is "Harambee", which means "Let us all pull together" in Swahili. This adage could also be the rallying cry for the aviation industry in Africa because collaboration among industry stakeholders is more important than ever, especially in times of great challenges and opportunities. Kenya Airways has collaborated with Amadeus on a number of different fronts in order to provide our customers with innovative services.

Kenya airways airplane

One of these initiatives has been launched through Amadeus Web Services, using Plusgrade technology. This technology gives our Economy Class passengers the opportunity to bid for an upgrade to Business Class. Passengers on all Kenya Airways scheduled flights in Economy class, across the network, can bid on upgrades with the highest bidder being selected 24 hours before check-in. The benefits are two-fold, delivering a better travel experience for our passengers while we can generate extra revenues from unsold premium seats.

To push powerful targeted travel offers, we selected Amadeus Campaign Management. Previously, our in-house solution had high operational costs, slow time to market, and caused many customer complaints. Now, with Amadeus Campaign Management, we’ve been able to dramatically reduce operational costs, transform our time to market from three days to 10 minutes, and quadruple the volume of offers from 150 to 600. Watch here an extract of a presentation from my colleague Mwajuma Salim at the recent Amadeus Airline Direct Leaders Forum, expanding on this topic.

Kenya Airways Amadeus Campaign Management Case Study

Mobile is another area that we have been focusing on. It’s a particularly important channel in Kenya, where penetration rates are higher than that of PCs. With this in mind, we adopted the Amadeus powered Mobile App platform to develop the KQ Mobile app. This cutting-edge app allows our passengers to book flights, select seats, buy tickets, and manage bookings, among other things, all from their mobile device.

We’ve also been able to diversify our product offerings by collaborating with Booking.com to sell accommodation in order to offer an integrated experience to our customers. Kenya Airways passengers can book flights and accommodation through our website or book holiday packages via the Kenya Airways Holidays portal. Our passengers can also experience duty free shopping through our KQ Duty Free website.

For more than 20 years, we’ve enjoyed a mutually beneficial global distribution partnership with Amadeus and we’ve also implemented their innovative technology, including the Altéa Suite. This collaboration has helped us become the pride of Africa, by inspiring our people and delighting our guests consistently – and I’m proud to say that in 2016 the World Travel Awards recognised us as the “Best Airline in Africa”.

With so many innovative projects in place, and the right technology partner to support us, I’m optimistic that we can continue to work together towards a better future of aviation in Africa.

Editor’s Note: This post is part of our

Fly Africa series where Amadeus partners in Africa share their experiences and strategies to serve the continent.


Customer Testimonial, Middle East, Guest Post