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The true cost of payments

Paco Pérez-Lozao Rüter

Senior Vice President, Strategic Growth Businesses, Amadeus

Some might say that for about 50 years the payments industry was a relatively uneventful place: a well-established ecosystem of banks, credit card schemes and others reliably ticked over in the background, helping us make day-to-day payments. But sometime in the past ten years all that changed; the well-established ecosystem was joined by a whole host of other, new players looking to innovate in payments.

The question the Amadeus team asked ourselves was, “How are our travel customers approaching all this innovation in payments?”

To answer that question we worked with PYMNTS, a reference in the payments sector, which surveyed 78 heads of payments in travel companies – specifically, airlines, travel agencies and hotels. These are a few of the interesting findings:

  • 85% of the travel companies interviewed had not implemented a significant innovation in payments in the past three years. This is despite the fact that the majority of respondents felt that innovating in this space would help them increase their profitability.
  • So what is holding them back? Principally, concerns over data security and the complexity of their payment infrastructure.
  • The good news is that 95% expected to innovate in payments in the next five years. So we could be at an important tipping point in travel payments innovation.
  • Payments is a huge cost in the travel industry. The average in our survey was 5.3% of revenue. When we dug deeper we found that, when estimating payment costs, many respondents were including not just the fees they pay to their banks, but also capital expenditure and personnel costs.

Payments is a key pillar in our strategy to accelerate the diversification of Amadeus into innovative service offerings and markets. In payments we are looking to address the issues uncovered in our research by putting travel companies in control of their payments infrastructure.

With our deep travel expertise, and trusted payment partner model, Amadeus is already making seamless payments a reality for travel companies.  Our smart payment hub allows travel companies to manage payments across all their countries, sales channels and payment methods. Once connected to our smart hub, travel companies can easily create seamless payment experiences, increasing operational efficiencies and reducing costs.  

Our suite of payments solutions is adapted to fit the travel process at all points during the traveler journey: booking online or on mobile, in call centers and at the airport.  It also evolves and adapts constantly, based on the needs of our customers.

This is all part of our firm commitment to industry evolution, enabling greater innovation through deploying the power of technology, which is vital to provide new experiences for millions of travelers.

Get the full report at http://amadeus.com/payments-research


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