travelBulletin

New data service

The Australian travel industry is set to gain significantly better insight via a new AFTA-backed collaboration with data firm GfK.

The Australian travel industry is set to gain significantly better insight via a new AFTA-backed collaboration with data firm GfK. Under the initiative GfK will anonymously collate booking data from participating travel agents – via an automatic process linked to back office systems – to produce the new Travelscan report, providing insight into forward demand and industry trends.

Described as “a new travel industry market currency” by GfK Australia general manager, Gwenno Hopkins, participants will have access to the regular report which is already well established in Europe where it has become the ‘must-have’ business tool for travel retailers. “We are certain the Australian travel community will benefit from an aggregated read of outbound and domestic trends,” Hopkins said.

There has long been a paucity of data about the industry, with many agents bemoaning the fact that it is difficult to find benchmarks for them to measure against. One useful metric is IATA BSP data, which the airline group used to publish on a regular basis but has not been made public for some years. The annual report of the Travel Compensation Fund also gave a useful insight into the size of businesses in the industry, but of course the demise of the TCF means this is no longer available.

AFTA ceo Jayson Westbury said the GfK initiative was part of the Federation’s work to help travel agents understand their businesses better. “As the travel community becomes more selfsufficient and less reliant on government in this industry-related environment, important travel data will be key to help maintain and build good travel agents across Australia,” he said.

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