Meet the Disruptors: Yapta

21 August 2017

Flight and hotel rebooking can generate savings, we speak to one of the specialists

james-filsinger1-240Awareness of price tracking and rebooking technology is growing, with systems now being integrated into some TMC platforms, as we heard in a BTiQ webinar. The function is available not just for flights but hotel bookings too. We caught up with Yapta's CEO James Filsinger to hear more about what these technologies do, ahead of his discussion on how to buy air travel in 2017 with Andreas Koster, Lufthansa and Marcus Eklund, FCM  at Business Travel Summit London.

When were you launched?

Yapta was launched in 2007 as a free airfare price tracking service for consumers, but it wasn't until five years later, in 2012, that Yapta pivoted its business to serve enterprise customers with the launch of FareIQ, it's corporate airfare price tracking service. In 2014, Yapta introduced RoomIQ, the first hotel price tracking service for companies.

How many people are working for the company?

Our team is comprised of 35 passionate, energetic, and motivated people working out of its Seattle, Washington headquarters.

Sum up what your company/product does in one sentence.

Yapta dynamically tracks the airfare prices and hotel rates on booked corporate travel itineraries, alerts its clients when that travel is eligible for savings as a result of a price decrease, thereby allowing for the capture of that savings.

Why is it unique?

We deliver the only service that globally tracks both airfare and hotel rates for corporate customers, providing total trip price assurance. With FareIQ's average identified savings of $260 per airline ticket, and RoomIQ's identifying an average of $109 in savings per trip, companies that use both RoomIQ and FareIQ can realize a combined average savings of $369 per trip. Yapta is also the only company that dynamically reads fare rules and restrictions for each itinerary, and the rate level detail for each hotel booking, enabling the most efficient price monitoring and maximising savings for clients. Further, we provide a service via a fully automated reticketing platform, with automated rebooking in the works. Lastly, our unique data insights and analytics provide full transparency into programme performance, enabling customers to benchmark and better negotiate with supplier partners.

What problem does it solve?

We enable companies to reduce airfare and hotel costs - generating true bottom line savings, strengthen their negotiating position with travel suppliers, and fulfill travel management best practices. We empower companies to use our rich data related to supplier pricing to their advantage by tracking travel prices from a number of different angles - including negotiated rates versus public rates, penalty versus non-penalty rates, and prices inside and outside of the void window, among other approaches.

What platforms is it available on and can integrate with?

By building its solutions to seamlessly align with existing business travel processes, Yapta supports any TMC or corporate customer utilising Sabre or Apollo global distribution systems. We are working to add support for all GDSs soon.

What markets is it available in?

Yapta's price tracking technology is available to all domestic and international points of sale.

Which companies are using it already?

More than 6,000 companies - including Amazon, Shell Oil, Accenture, Eli Lilly, GAP, General Electric Company, and The NBA.

What do travel managers like about it?

It saves their company a significant amount of money (delivering more than $80 million US in savings to date), it enables them to do a better job of negotiating with suppliers, and it avoids traveler disruption by only alerting to identical flights and hotel properties.

Why do travellers like it?

Travelers appreciate Yapta because it helps them be good stewards of company spend and doesn't disrupt their travel plans.

What are your growth plans?

The company is in the unique position of having the ability to reinvest virtually 100% of revenue back into the advancement of our products and services. As a result, Yapta will soon be launching new features and capabilities that will make hotel and airfare savings even easier for corporate customers, bringing greater value to the market. Yapta also has a significant hiring plan to support its growth, nearly doubling employee headcount by the end of the year.

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