If you own an airline or travel agency, or want to launch one in the future, having a flight booking system will be essential to your success. From creating your initial website to ensuring that you have the most up-to-date flight information, learn how to build a flight booking system in this guide. By the end of it, you’ll be able to use your new flight booking system right away!
Design a Framework
Assemble a basic framework for what your app or program should do, how it will be structured, and what each piece should do. Put together a list of functions and features you want to include and then try to order them into some kind of cohesive whole. In order to be successful at meeting deadlines, having clear parameters is crucial as they help you stay focused on projects without getting distracted by every single feature request that’s thrown your way. It also allows other people (e.g., designers) in your team to get an idea of what they’re working with and offer better feedback and ideas along the way.
Integrate with Third Party Systems
One of the best ways to make your business more efficient is to have a way to integrate with other systems. This could mean integrating with accounting software, allowing customers to book flights through Facebook, or even just making it easy for them to send you money. Make sure that your flight booking software allows for third-party integrations and find out how you can use one of those integrations. You’ll be able to solve problems faster and easier in many cases, and potentially build relationships with new partners in the process!
Integrate with Travel Booking Platforms
It might be tempting to build your own booking platform from scratch, but unless you’re a travel expert and have extensive knowledge of industry trends and customer needs, you should probably leave it to companies that specialize in booking travel. Choose a system that integrates with industry-leading platforms like Expedia, Travelocity, Orbitz or Hotwire. You’ll have access to their inventory of flight options and customer base (potentially opening up your app to many more customers), while saving yourself a lot of time and hassle. Also note: It can take months for new flights from big airlines to show up on third-party sites—plan ahead.
Handle Rate Changes
This is a huge win for your customers: They can book their flight and forget about it until it’s time to fly. This also gives them peace of mind knowing that they’re being notified before they pay any additional money if rates go up. And, from a business perspective, we all know that our revenue is directly correlated with customer satisfaction—so helping people feel confident in their purchase will lead to more repeat business. When someone books a flight on your site, we track those flights in our database so we can automatically notify them when prices change. We send out an email detailing what happened and how much prices have changed (and by how much). If there are seats available at lower prices than what they paid, we tell them where they can find those seats on our site. The result? Customers are happy because they’re paying less than expected; you’re happy because you still get paid even though someone else sold their seat at a higher price; and everyone wins!
Handle Full/Partial Refunds
Refunds are a common issue that pops up during any flight booking process. What if a customer changes their mind? Refunds are important to handle, as every airline and booking system handles them differently. Luckily for you, ecommerce platforms like Shopify give you an easy way to accept partial refunds – so let’s take a look at how it works in more detail…
Follow Up With Customers
Let’s say you built a flight booking system for your business. You tested it out with a small group of customers and they loved it. Great! Now, if you want to make any money, you have to make sure your existing customers use it (so they can continue to buy flights) and convince other businesses in your area that also need a flight booking system to use yours as well. And yes, sales is hard work—but if you automate even just one step of it through sending an automated email after each sale or follow up phone call, you can save yourself valuable time and energy while continuing to grow your business. Learn more about how Salesforce automation tools work here .
The key to making a flight booking system is that you need to make sure that it’s scalable. This means that when you first create your flight booking system, make sure it has all of the functionality required for handling hundreds or thousands of flights per month. Keep in mind that adding new features after launch is much more expensive than building everything into a robust flight booking system from day one.