Archive for the 'KLM' Category

Air France KLM Adds Alitalia As Potential Merger Target

Air France KLM Logo Air France KLM has once again admitted their interest in Iberia and Alitalia, which airlines are basically on sale. Iberia, the Spanish national carrier is profitable, but the shareholders wish to find a new owner to protect the company in the long run, while Alitalia has been making losses for long decades by now, and the government is forced to sell it, basically under any circumstances.

Air France KLM wants to grow, and now emphasizes it once again. They are already the biggest European carrier, but they want to move forward and wish to become a major driving force behind the ongoing consolidation of the European Airline Market.

Iberia logo Air France KLM Chairman and CEO Jean-Cyril Spinetta yesterday said in an interview with the Financial Times, that they are indeed studying a potential merger with either Alitalia or Iberia. He said AF KLM has held “informal” talks with potential Spanish financial partners (see earlier report by Airlineworld), though it is not yet in official discussions with Iberia. The cooperation with Iberia would be a little more complicated, but the Spanish carrier is in good financial shape at the moment, and is the leading airline between Europe and South-America. AF KLM are one of the leading members of the SkyTeam alliance, while Iberia is a founding member of oneworld. How they would solve this situation, is not yet known, it is probably one of the major issues in the ongoing evaluations. According to Spinetta: “We are in the phase of evaluating the potential for cooperation with Iberia.

Alitalia logo He explained that AF KLM declined to participate in the failed auction earlier this year for the Italian government’s stake in Alitalia because it did not believe the terms and conditions set for the sale were viable. But the situation has changed with the appointment of a management team led by Maurizio Prato, who initiated a new restructuring effort, which includes cutting back traffic at Milan-Malpensa hub, and has been asked by the government to sell the state’s 49.9% stake, he said.

If Mr. Prato wants to talk to us, we will listen carefully,” Spinetta said. “He has a clear mission to sell this stake, but how he sees this problem I don’t know.” He added that “the Italian market is very strong. There are huge business traffic flows and tourist leisure flows. The potential is very high.” And knowing that both airlines being members of SkyTeam, the traffic integration would not be that big of an issue in this case, but the financial situation is the one that would easily give a headache to AF KLM. Now, that several privatization attempts have failed for Alitalia, AF KLM may be in a better (and stronger) position to discuss a possible solution face-to-face with Alitalia, and Mr. Prato.

by balint01


KLM – SITA CUSS kiosks

My heart was beating faster, when I read this article yesterday on ATW Online:

KLM became the first airline to offer self-service check-in to passengers at Kuala Lumpur International, using the SITA-installed CUSS kiosks now in operation there. Together with Malaysia Airports, SITA installed 12 CUSS kiosks with 24 more to follow over the next few months. SITA said CUSS check-in applications for both Malaysia Airlines and Cathay Pacific will be placed on the kiosks before year end and the option also will be available to some 40 other carriers using KLIA.

And why was it beating faster? Because Malev was the first airline to offer self-service check-in on SITA CUSS Kiosks at the Budapest Airport. And I was the unlucky project manager who had the chance to manage that project. What was the problem? I’ll try to sum it up:

– I start it with a fact we had no other choice but working with SITA, as they were our DCS provider and they did not want to give acces to the DCS to any other CUSS provider – good start.

This is what we saw:

The promised SITA kiosk

– this was the promised kiosk. It looks good, doesn’t it? There was no problem with the way it looked, however the hardware was provided by a third party supplier, so SITA had no clue how it worked. Therefore every time we had a problem with it, we had to wait more days to get an answer from them. And we had problems.

– First hardware problem was that the kiosks were delivered here after being put together. But here we had to drill them down to the floor and for that we needed to take almost everything out from the metal box and put them together again. For that we needed a special OK from the supplier company, otherwise we could have lost warranty.

– We had many problems with the different readers. we disabled the ATB ticket reader and used only the parrport reader and the credit card reader, however these 2 readers worked with about 50% precision.

– The project was also ridiculous. We had a contact – a Hungarian guy – who was an engineer, understood the software uite well and helped us defining our requirements. We agreed on everything, then suddenly he was “taken away” from the picture, because he gave us information he was not supposed to give out. (I still have no clue what it could be) After he left the project, an American lady took over, who was uncontactable for 2-3 weeks, when it turned out she left SITA or that department in the meantime, but nobody told us about it. In the meantime we were appointed a polish project managaer, who was far enough from the London project center and even further from the developers in Canada, so as we assumed, we always k ew more about the status of the project than him. Besides that his English was awful and he was completely new at SITA, so besides being far from the other project memebers, he did not know them.

– In the end kiosks were delivered after deadline, the software never worked properly, they were not able to correct some of the outstanding bugs even until now, although the installation happened last spring.

So here is what we got:

SITA kiosks in useSITA kiosks in use

By Szafi

Smart Gift for Online Bookers at KLM

KLM has launched a new promotion, which is very-very smart and other airlines should take the idea and come up with similar campaigns in my opinion. So what is it and why is it so great?

Easy Boarding Bag by KLM

Good for the passenger: Free gift. It’s always good for the passenger when they receive something free, of course. And this gift is an “Easy Boarding Bag”, a very practical gift. It’s one of those bags that we all need to use in our hand luggages when boarding a plane or each time we go through security at an airport. I started using such a bag last October when these new regulations were introduced all around the EU and it worn out by Christmas. Then I bought a pack of 3 better quality bags, for EUR 1.5 that have a tougher zip and are made of tougher material. One of them is getting worn out by now again… And in case you’re not traveling that much, you would not want to buy such a bag, and would not have all those small packs and portions of toiletries at hand by default. You would have to go to a specialized beauty store (as the standard packages are bigger than 100 ml in most cases), which takes time, money and extra effort before you travel and have a thousand of other things to think about already… So besides being a free gift, this gift makes your life easier! It takes away the hazzle to search for these toiletries, for such a bag, etc. AND in this campaign you get it before you travel, so you can be SURE that you don’t need to deal with these things at all, KLM has done it for you.

Good for the airport: More passengers will come to the security checks with the already prepared, standard and acceptable toiletrie bags, which speeds up the checks.

Good for the cosmetics company: Rituals is the cosmetics company that provides the toiletries to these bags. It’s a great promotion for them, they reach out for a target group that has money available and this way receives a free trial collection of all products bascially!

Good for the airline: As they have connected this free gift to online booking, the online booking engine will get more traffic, and maybe passengers will try it out, who have not used it before, thus the (cheapest) online sales channel gets promoted. And of course customer loyalty raises as well, as people will talk about “the free gift bag I got from KLM” before their travel (“how nice it is that I don’t need to worry about all these small toiletries, they just gave them to me”), and if they are visiting family/friends, it could easily be brought up there too, especially if they share bathroom! 🙂

So this is a very wise promotion, all players win from it, congratulations to whoever came up with this idea at KLM! (If the person may read this article, please drop us a comment!)

by balint01

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