Towards a richer content future at WPS

Svend Leirvaag

VP Industry Affairs, Amadeus IT Group

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The theme of IATA World Passenger Symposium, which kicks off in Hamburg next week, seems very apt: “Innovating Better, Together”. The program promises that this 5th edition of the event will show how ‘now, more than ever, collaboration is critical to transform passenger travel’.


In the two years since this event was last held in Europe, much progress has been made by IATA, its member airlines, the travel agency community and technology providers in delivering on the promise of an improved passenger experience that unlocks value for the entire industry through a richer retail and merchandising offering.

The NDC XML standard has been one key component of this progress, and will be discussed widely during next week’s event. There have inevitably been bumps on the road for NDC since its inception, but Amadeus has been in the forefront of delivering on the standard’s promise of providing benefits in the rich content and shopping areas, in particular.

And if anyone was ever in doubt, we re-emphasise that since the NDC project got back on a collaborative track in 2014, Amadeus has been engaged in NDC-XML discussions, and is fully committed to supporting IATA in the delivery of a workable standard for all industry players.

We were proud to deliver an industry first project with United Airlines with NDC XML messages implemented to book chargeable seats. We also continue to work on a pilot for NDC XML shopping messages with Qatar Airways. Our support is strong and consistent, and will continue.

But while important, NDC XML is just one standard among many key elements involved in delivering an enriched passenger experience, as it is only a small part of the merchandising effort underway in the industry.

With the global travel industry, and the way in which consumers experience it, changing so rapidly, continuous technological evolution is required as a minimum – just as has already happened in many other industries.

We are committed to embracing technologies to drive efficiencies and greater capabilities within our industry while supporting transparency, choice, competition, privacy and innovation in the air travel market place.

We look forward to continuing further productive discussions with IATA and our customers and partners in Hamburg next week to deliver the benefits, efficiencies and the industry needs to shape the future of merchandising


NDC, Industry Relations