FlightScanner - Why Should Airlines Participate?

What is FlightScanner?

FlightScanner is a web-based search and booking engine application that is marketed exclusively to travel agents. FlightScanner is already used by over 8,000 travel agents and is present on desktops in over 20 countries worldwide.

In its simplest form it allows the user to enter search criteria in a single screen and returns real-time fares and availability from the web sites of the 50+ supported carriers - including scheduled/flag carriers, low cost carriers and charter operators. The only requirement is that the carrier has a web site.

The airlines listed on the right have already been included in FlightScanner, at varying levels of integration. FlightScanner makes it easier for travel agents to purchase products from these airlines via the Internet, and for some carriers FlightScanner has opened up a completely new channel altogether.

How do airlines benefit from being included in FlightScanner?

Like the 50+ airlines that are already present in FlightScanner, inclusion can provide you with:

  • Access to a new international distribution channel - FlightScanner is used on over 8,000 desktops throughout Europe (including UK, Scandinavia, Germany, Italy and Spain) and we have customers in all the major International markets. Among our customers are:
    • Travel management companies - like BTI, Portman Travel, P&O Travel, Navigant and The Travel Company
    • High street travel agency groups - like DER, FlightCentre, STA Travel, Global Travel Group, House of Travel and Ilkeston Coop Travel
    • Tour operators - like Cresta, TUI and Titan Group

    In addition to accessing a new distribution channel the FlightScanner team can also offer a range of marketing opportunities to enable the airline's products to be promoted to our customer base. Even if you do not have the advertising budget of the big carriers, FlightScanner gives you immediate access to a large number of agents in key European and world markets.

  • Ability to fit with the travel agent's workflow - FlightScanner enables travel consultants to book online as easily as they do via the GDS. The agents simply enter their search criteria once and simultaneously search the web sites of all the supported airlines - they don't have to visit multiple web sites or remember who flies which routes. And most importantly, once the booking is completed on the carrier site, FlightScanner captures the entire booking information and hands it back to the agent for capture into their back office system. Back office integration is constantly mentioned as the single biggest barrier to convincing travel agents to migrate from booking via the GDS to booking via your web site, or to book with you at all. FlightScanner participation solves this problem and at the same time makes it easier for travel agents to sell your products.

  • Optimised traffic to your web site - FlightScanner pre-checks all queries, for example by validating city pairs and ensuring your airline has a product to offer before hitting your web site or booking engine, so that only relevant searches are passed to the carrier site. Also, FlightScanner only uses real-time searches and doesn't rely on systematic scanning and data caching, a practice that can be very resource intensive for your site. So, we don’t hit your site with irrelevant queries and you don’t waste resources on invalid searches. This means you keep your costs down.

  • New opportunities to integrate your products - Airlines selling via the web usually experience problems integrating with on-line booking engines that power travel agency sites or corporate system. FlightScanner can solve these problems by integrating your carrier at our highest level of participation: FlightScanner IBE, our XML-based booking engine.

    Having your airline available via FlightScanner IBE makes your products accessible to new customers, for example:

    • Corporate online reservation systems – large corporates will not usually go direct to airline web sites as they have to comply with corporate policy and integrate with their expense systems. However, by having your products included in FlightScanner IBE you are able to service this lucrative market as these systems integrate with FlightScanner for the non-GDS content.
    • Tour operator packaging systems – similarly Tour Operators do not have to rely on carriers only available via the GDS but, by integrating with FlightScanner IBE, they can offer dynamic packaging via the web. It would not be cost effective for tour operators to search every airline site or develop multiple direct connects, but they can do a single search using FlightScanner IBE and then dynamically bundle flights with hotels to create a package.

Rather than developing and managing direct relationships with every corporate and tour operator, participating in FlightScanner allows you to simply deal with a single supplier.

  • Stay in control - If you have a Travel Trade or Corporate section on your site or engine FlightScanner has the ability to integrate directly into those sections instead of the general web site. This means that you still control who has access to your inventory and at what price while the agent does not lose any of the extra functionality that you have built for them.
  • Access market data - FlightScanner provides participating airlines with access to our web-based reporting module. Giving you the ability to see what routes are most requested and sold on our entire system, who the companies are that are using our product and key statistics about the traffic that transacted with your web site.

So, what is the catch? There is no catch. Participating in FlightScanner does not cost anything to the airline - there are no booking fees and no implementation charges.

How does an airline participate in FlightScanner then?

If you wish to participate in FlightScanner it is very likely that you will not need to do any development and we can simply front end your web site. To participate at the highest level (FlightScanner IBE) we require that you have either an XML interface or you are already using one of the many booking engines or reservation systems that we already support.

If you would like to discuss participating in FlightScanner please contact Roberto Da Re at or call + 44 (0) 20 8394 6000.

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FlightScanner currently searches the sites of:

Aer Arann
Aer Lingus
Air 2000
Air Berlin
Air New Zealand
Air Southwest
Air Wales
AirTran Airways
Basiq Air
British Airways
Deutsche BA
Freedom Air
Germania Express
Hapag-Lloyd Express
Nordic Airlink
Virgin Blue
Virgin Express
Vueling Airlines
Wizz Air