Travelport Ireland invited top agents to an informative half-day Leadership Forum at Google HQ in Dublin last week, which began with a video that informed delegates that Travelport carries out 900 transactions per second – and that the A380 is more fuel efficient per passenger than a Toyoto Prius!
Michael Burns of PricewaterhouseCooper, addressing the economic outlook, said: “Volatility in financial markets is adding to uncertainty about economic prospects and driving a ‘new normal’ for global air travel, whereby the airline industry will not bounce back as it has done in the past. Equally, Irish passenger numbers are unlikely to bounce back any time soon. In Europe, growth is going to be in inbound travel, particularly from emerging markets.
“Growth drivers for outbound travel will be new fuel efficient, long range B787 and A350 aircraft – and with the 100-passenger A321 making Cork – USA flights an economic possibility; new airports; and new tourism development and new destinations – in Latin America, Africa and South-east Asia.”
Scott Field of Google revealed that travel searches on Google are up 15% year-on-year in Ireland – compared to being flat in the UK. Searches are lower from computers, but much higher from mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.
Damiano Sabatino of Travelport said that the number of travellers was expected to double from 2010 to 2030, with short-haul air travel increasing by 2.4 times and long-haul by 2.8 times. Major growth within Europe will be my high-speed tail, which will have 420 million passengers by 2016 on 140 high-speed lines between major European cities.