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Thanks to new distribution agreement between Amadeus and Ctrip, buying a ticket on Renfe routes in Spain will be as easy as booking a flight for customers of Ctrip, one of the largest travel agencies in the world
Imagine being a traveler from Beijing trying to book a rail ticket from Barcelona to Madrid during your tour of Europe. This will not be a simple task. You will have to go on foreign websites that may not accept your currency, and you might eventually give up on the opportunity to discover the beautiful Spanish landscape from the comfort of a high-speed train. With Spain aiming to attract one million Chinese tourists by 2020, it is essential to offer them the best travel options in an accessible and convenient way.
But of course this isn’t just about China. Amadeus’ new distribution agreement with Ctrip will allow around 90 million registered monthly active users globally of the Ctrip suite of brands easy access to tickets from Renfe, the national Spanish rail operator. Through this partnership, Ctrip customers from anywhere in the world will be able to book and pay for Spanish rail tickets in their own language and currency.
Rail routes will be available first across the Ctrip Group, which includes Ctrip.com and Qunar for Chinese customers and Trip.com for overseas customers. Following this launch, Ctrip plans to make Renfe’s offer available on mobile, through the new Ctrip application TrainPal. It will enable travelers to search for train fares on the go using its smart search engine, and will provide simplified bookings and secure payments, as well as discounted fares.
Mirja Sickel, Global Head of Rail and Ground Travel, Amadeus said, “Buying a rail ticket from anywhere in the world should be as easy as booking a flight. This is why we are so pleased to be partnering with Ctrip to open more opportunities for railways to reach travelers on a global scale, through the platforms they prefer. High speed rail is an accepted mode of transport for travelers from Ctrip’s home markets such as China, Japan, Taiwan or South Korea, with well-established rail networks where service and reliability are prioritized. So when they travel overseas, rail is a natural choice for them. Rail operators like Renfe that are quick to embrace technologies and adopt new commercial strategies to reach these travelers will benefit from higher growth than their competitors.”
Amy Wei, CEO of Ctrip International Train Ticketing said, “Our partnership with Amadeus is integral to our expansion strategy for rail. We already provide tickets for train routes in China as well as in other overseas markets. With the help of Amadeus, we are able to offer our customers even more rail options. This means our customers can fulfil all their European travel needs without ever having to leave the Ctrip network which they know and trust.”