Vueling has become the first European airline to be certified on the latest version of IATA's NDC Standard as it paves the way to sell all flights through digital platforms by 2024.
The Spanish budget carrier, which is part of IAG alongside British Airways, Aer Lingus and Iberia, has received ARM (Airline Retail Maturity) Index certification from IATA after successfully incorporating NDC version 21.3.
Following this move, Vueling said it was aiming to offer a “time-consistent” digital channel, which can also accommodate traffic using EDIFACT messaging from traditional booking channels, such as the GDSs.
“This new connection will allow travel agencies and technology distributors to access a wider range of content, including ancillary services and personalised offers, in addition to allowing these services to be booked directly through the platform,” said Vueling in a statement.
Vueling has started this process by certifying “shop” messaging within the system, which will then be expanded to “order” and “payment” messaging. Servicing functions are also set to be introduced by the end of this year.
The airline added: “Vueling reinforces its strategy of 100 per cent distribution through digital channels by 2024, positioning its own distribution channels (website, app and mobile) as premium channels and offering agencies, through its digital portal, Vueling Partners, and the NDC connection, a more complete offer than the traditional GDS channel.”
2023 is increasingly being seen as the long-awaited “breakthrough year” for NDC. Read more in BTN Europe’s Powered Up technology report.