FCM Travel Solutions, the flagship business travel division of Flight Centre Travel Group, has been named Leading Travel Management Company for Europe for the 11th consecutive year at the prestigious World Travel Awards.
The World Travel Awards programme is acknowledged across the globe as the ultimate travel accolade. Awards are voted for by travel and tourism professionals worldwide and these accolades recognise the commitment to excellence FCM has demonstrated over the past 12 months.
The award tops off an exceptional 12 months for FCM in Europe, as the travel management company has continued to grow its presence in key markets and won record levels of new multi-national business. FCM has also continued to focus on delivering innovative technology solutions within the business travel sector to support travel managers, bookers and travellers.
In particular, FCM’s ground-breaking mobile chat-bot based app, Sam, has been very positively received by clients and their travellers, who feel it represents a real step forward in the practical application of technology to create a truly different traveller experience. The highly-interactive, travel-savvy and anticipatory app delivers personalised contextual information via a conversational interface on the user’s smartphone.
Sam makes recommendations and performs actions relevant to the individual traveller’s trip, assisting business travellers with everything from itinerary management, air and hotel bookings, online check-in, flight updates and local weather forecasts to security notifications, taxis and transfers and city guides and destination information.
Earlier this year FCM also announced the launch of new functionality to support travel arrangers within Sam. This enhancement of Sam has been developed in response to client demand for greater visibility of their travellers in-trip. The new version for travel managers, PAs/EAs and bookers grants them access to view their current travellers’ itineraries, as well as receive notifications about events that affect each traveller, such as flight delays or cancellations. As a result, travel arrangers can take appropriate action or communicate directly with the traveller to ensure their wellbeing.
FCM has also continued to take the lead among TMCs in driving development and integration of a long-term NDC booking solution in EMEA with technology partner Amadeus. FCM and parent company Flight Centre’s travel consultants have begun testing the new graphical NDC-enabled user interface within Amadeus Selling Platform Connect. The design incorporates FCM’s feedback and creates an intuitive user experience that caters to the diverse booking needs across different markets. FCM expects the first live booking of NDC airline content via the enhanced Amadeus solution to be made within the next three months.
Andrew Boxall, Managing Director – Europe, FCM Travel Solutions commented: “We are extremely proud to win this award again this year. This is an outstanding achievement for FCM Travel Solutions and reflects the exceptional travel management services, professionalism and value that our people provide for clients in Europe.
“In a highly competitive market, we can never stand still, so over the last 12 months we have continued to innovate and enhance our technology, products and processes, to flex with the needs of our clients. But there is still more to come, and we will be unveiling some very exciting new products and services over the next year. Watch this space!”