Jeddah – Saudi Arabian Airlines (SV) has launched its new website on Tuesday April 22, 2008 after some extensive upgrades and development. The new website aims at streamlining online booking for its travelers.
Eng. Khalid Almolhem, Director General of Saudi Arabian Airlines, launched the new website in a press conference held at Saudia’s headquarters in Jeddah.
Almolhem said the upgrade falls in line with the national airline’s information technology master plan to make use of the latest technology to raise the level of services, meet the customers’ requirements, and face increasing competition among global airlines.
“The website has been completely redesigned to serve as a comprehensive center for quick and integrated services, simplifying booking procedures and electronic payment, providing instant information on the various service packages, which include onboard services such as meals, audiovisual entertainment and publications, as well as competitive prices that Saudi Arabian Airlines is offering all year round,” said Almolhem. “Add to that the tourism packages and Al-Fursan services.”
He added that a new portal system was introduced to give the website a “global characteristic,” where customers can begin booking online in the language of their country of origin for any European or American destination, and soon all over the world.
“Customers will experience that Saudi Arabian Airlines is closer to them, offering quick and distinctive services,” said Almolhem. He added that the new website will reduce the pressure on the national carrier’s phone booking facility, and will also reduce human resource expenses.
“By making people do their booking online, we are saving a lot of money that used to be paid to employees.”
Prior to the official launch of the new website, Yousef Abdulgader Attiah, Saudia’s Vice President for Customer Services, took the media through a comprehensive presentation on the new website, including key components in terms of services and information, as well as future upgrades to enhance its competitive position.
Online booking on the new website can be done in five simple steps. Starting with selection of the travel destination, date and class, the client simply moves on to selecting flights via a comprehensive schedule, which appears on the webpage and includes a series of available flights, prices, and class. Step 3 is entering passenger data and selection of the method of payment, step 4 comprises entering any special data for electronic payment, and the final step is to get the printable e-ticket and receive the full details of the flights and the booking reference number.
Upgrading the website is only one part of the airline’s strategic development plan, which includes fleet upgrades, development of its technical infrastructure, and training programs. Privatization has already begun with the catering unit. The next division to be privatized is the cargo unit, and the rest of the sectors to follow.