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AFTA CEO Update


Travel Daily CEO Exclusive - Tuesday 4 September

DO YOU know what the future holds? Do you know what will happen next? If so, please insert the chip and wait
for the reaction. What am I talking about? The future of course. I have just spent a few days with Sabre in
Singapore at the SabreSTX learning about what is next, what is going to happen in travel and how tech companies like Sabre are ahead of the curve.

There are really exciting times ahead for everyone in travel and as the integration of technology and the delivery capabilities of humans are enshrined into the DNA of the future, I have come away feeling more confident about
travel agents, travel companies and travel generally having participated in such an awesome event.

Travel and technology are intrinsically linked for several good reasons. The most important one being – the future traveller and their needs, which will require a smarter, faster, more coherent cohort of integration between tech and humans. For travel agencies to be successful going forward and to continue their important role in the travel value chain, these two aspects will come closer together. When a conference brings to life today’s reality but at the same time shows you what can happen now but seems to be something of the future, your mind is definitely
exercised and I send a big shout out to the team at Sabre for doing just that at their tech exchange last week.

The other thing that becomes very clear to me is that NDC and all that it wants to be and all that it might become will be delivered efficiently and eloquently by Sabre into the future so travel agents who are partnering with Sabre or are on their system, clearly have very little to worry about when it comes to NDC.

This will be an interesting area to watch over the development phase in the coming years and it is good to know that Sabre and in fact the other GDS are all singing similar hymns when it comes to providing NDC source content in a rich environment on the desk top to the travel agent, without the world collapsing around us all. So the future holds good things when it comes to travel, technology and the interrelationship with us mere mortals, the humans doing the work.