The CoronaVirus has affected us all.
As requested by many clients, Axis Travel Centre has collated some requested extracts from various comments made by Max Najar, Director of Axis Travel Centre from recent 2020 radio and print quotes, with expanded explanations of facts that you may not know about!
A recent quote: “……..I regard this not as another virus problem but as a true worldwide Industrial Revolution, not experienced by us humans since the 1800’s.
This “Revolution” has already changed the world we live in but it has also unthreaded our old social fabric, applying new sewing techniques into how we will all live our lives into the future .
This CoronaVirus continues to destroy old business relationships, creating new relationships, forcing us all to rethink our employment strategies, disrupting links within the old manufacturing chains and applying new challenges in how we manage health and technology.
The current reduction in our air, water and earth pollution is already noticeable not only forcing us all to consider how we can adjust our daily lives but coincidentally forcing us to acknowledge that we are indeed only guests and not masters of the world that we live in”
Things cannot be and will not be the same again.
“ Grab your diaries and scrapbooks as we are all living in a historical time zone that our children and grandchildren will study and reflect upon”.
HERE TODAY : WHAT WE ARE DOING NOW.
The dedicated staff at Axis Travel Centre are still investing long hours within our office physically and remotely to assist our loyal clients who were or remain stranded interstate or overseas, on cruise ships, locked away in hotels, making contact with clients in outback regions of the world whilst liaising with Airlines, Cruises, Hotel and numerous travel suppliers to amend or cancel travel components. We are also assisting clients with the correct interpretation of complex rules to provide common-sense advice with various options or guiding clients through the complexities of Insurance claims.
Axis Travel Centre is in a good place in 2020 having solid control of what needs to be done, using over 42 years of industry expertise and experiences to attend to each person’s travel needs in a well-structured priority manner.
Throughout this challenging period, we have maintained our security, accreditations and credentials with AFTA, ATAS, BOOKSAFE, CLIA, CRUISECO and TIDS with the unique free “SECURITY UMBRELLA” © Protection Package which includes protection we give for all Airlines under the SAFI protection (Scheduled Airline Failure Insurance) to protect you against any possible financial collapse of an Airline when we book and issue your airtickets . As at April 22nd 2020, we remain the only travel agent in South Australia with this free SAFI protection plan.
HERE TOMORROW : OUR RESILIENCE WILL CONTINUE.
Some clients may be anxious and unaware of exactly what to do, what not to do, how to react, how to change or cancel travel plans, when to consider future travel plans or how best to approach Travel Insurers .
Axis Travel Centre has a professional service toolkit that includes qualified staff, the highest levels of Agency accreditations and security, access to privy computer software with the uniqueness of relying upon over 42 years of experience and expertise plus privileged access to Airlines, Cruises, Hotels, Tours and governments.
In times of high anxiety and uncertainty the fall-back to maintain our resilience, to use human rapport and empathy easily overrides any form of technology.
We prefer to depend upon our trusted travel industry colleagues to assist us in times of need, extend favours or secure solid advice that usually supersedes written rules or generic conditions, in favour of our valued clients. They respect us and we respect them.
We know that this virus impact will eventually pass, so we are gearing up to return to what we do best. If you are anxious about any current or possible future travel with us, please contact us.
WEBSITES : HEAR WHAT WE DO AND DO NOT DO !
WE DO NOT RELY UPON CONSUMER WEBSITES OR PHONE NUMBERS.
For effective and efficient communications, hear what we have to say-using critical advantages.
Our travel industry is fabulous in marketing what we sell but not very good in communicating the huge difference between a professional travel agent’s access (AXIS !) to privy websites , phone numbers and industry contacts compared against many basic(flimsy) consumer travel related websites and many diverted 1300/1800 advertised travel phone numbers
Our staff access the same consumer websites and see the same media travel offers out there , nationally and internationally, but additionally, we also have privy access to private CUG (Closed User Group) websites, connections, software and phone contacts that our clients, the public and media cannot access, allowing us to offer more travel choices and value-added price options.
TECHNOLOGY WE USE- We invest in a non-public Computer Reservations System(CRS) with added CRS enhancements, investing annually into staff training , instead of wasteful, expensive marketing plans plus our Insurance investment of protecting clients monies via our “SECURITY UMBRELLA” © Protection Package.
Axis Travel Centre , has spent over four decades using the power of a CRS (Computer Reservation System} which requires us to use highly specific keyboard entries into encrypted software platforms, to link into secured industry specific domains .We use the “SABRE” CRS that is equipped with security protocols through the use of encrypted VPN communication, and multi-factor authentication. Sabre uses global collaboration infrastructure that supports voice, video, chat, mail, file sharing, and desktop sharing capabilities from any location, as well as secure access to all Sabre applications and infrastructure
SABRE is based on the original MS-DOS platform and not Windows!
From a computer software security angle, most consumer travel reservation websites are based on a Windows platform whereas SABRE uses the original basic MS-DOS coded computer language system that remains very stable, utilizing long-string-format codes which are less prone to any security breaches or 3rd party encryption infiltrations or ID theft issues.
AXIS MANAGEMENT COMMENT : “ I remember that during the 2001 Sept 11th attack of New York city and the 2003 Iraqi war events, the SABRE CRS and AMEX Satellite and software systems were partly commandeered by the US Government and their FBI department to transfer their data worldwide as the SABRE CRS and AMEX Satellite was regarded as more secure with less chance of interception than what IBM/Windows/Apple had , which slightly compromised our office speeds but we understood their need to do what they needed to do …………
To maintain our ability to extract the best productivity from our CRS investment, our Staff must maintain their individual ongoing training of their CRS skills and any additional product knowledge in order to maintain their individual certifications to remain contracted to our agency to professionally service clients.
Airline and other supplier websites, cannot emulate the speed, the dexterity and the efficiencies that our CRS systems allow us to access.
AXIS MANAGEMENT COMMENT: “Our investment in SABRE is not your standard , off-the-shelf CRS investment We use the core of SABRE with additional SABRE+ synchronised software that allows us to deliver extra enhanced capabilities across a myriad of software platforms.
A simple CRS booking example, is how we enhance travel bookings by adding travel components, via a two screen CRS setup. We can assemble a mixed Airline flight booking in chronological order, automate fare quotes from thousands of choices and permutations, adding seating, food, special service requests then continuing in the same booking screen to add frequent flyer numbers then synchronize transfers ,vehicle rentals ,any Hotels and Cruises, progressing onwards to link this same booking with appropriate travel insurance, reviewing overseas health or visa advice, whilst abiding by international Government and Border Security updates via our trusted and accredited sources. This CRS investment costs us more in ongoing Agency fees but provides us with the highest levels of speed and efficiencies benchmarked against verifiable sources for our clients.”
As at April 2020, the SABRE + CRS connectivity allows us to access over 400 airlines, 200,000 hotels, 300 tour operators, 50 rail carriers, 40 car rental outlets and 180 cruise lines.
A BOOKING COMPARISON EXAMPLE: HEAR THE BIG DIFFERENCES!
Comparing a booking made via Axis Travel Centre against consumer websites.
We can compare all airlines on one-screen , complete a 4 sector flight Itinerary, add your name, your contact details, frequent flyer number, request seating, secure special inflight meal requests , book a car transfer and hotel room with executive floor access ,add your Hotel club number and issue your ETicket with travel vouchers in less than 90 seconds .
A fast typing consumer, using multiple websites, adding the same requested data as above at least 25 to 45 minutes to do the same booking, having to also accept liability for any errors or omissions they make!
If you equate that mathematically, it can be easily understood how the use of our CRS connected systems delivers benefits and advantages to us all that no consumer initiated booking process can ever match in efficiency, speed, choices or accuracy.
As stated earlier, the travel industry is great at marketing products we sell but not so good in delivering an insight into what we do, what we invest in and what it delivers to you.
RESPONSIBILITY, ACCOUNTABILITY and LIABILITY : HEAR OUR LEGALITIES!
Unlike anonymous websites, outsourced phone numbers or the disappearing here today-gone tomorrow travel companies, the management and staff of Axis Travel Centre exist from a solid bricks and mortar office with humans you can relate to, talk to and personally meet.
- We are legally accountable and liable in what we do and say, governed by our held Travel Industry accreditations and Government, ACCC, ASIC, Consumer Affairs standards.
- We must deliver what is asked of us , paying any fines attributable to us ,such as us not correctly performing our duties on your behalf ,misinterpreting complex rulings ,placing wrong codes on tickets or vouchers or simply missing ticketing or final balance deadlines.
- Our services start from your initial consultation, during the booking process, when travel is being undertaken and after your return. We are not just a booking platform.
The end game is that we are always contactable by you, Government authorities and travel suppliers. We wear the consequences. We do not disappear, remain anonymous, and have no huge layers of red tape to get lost within. We are not a large “untouchable” corporation or a mysterious baseless seller.
AXIS MANAGEMENT COMMENT : IF WE MAKE MISTAKES: “An internal example is that if we enter a wrong name or date or sector or flight from what was advised by a client, we wear all costs to rebook, amend and re-issue documents, costing us from a few hundred dollars to thousands.
Alternatively, if we forget to cancel a 4 sector Air ticket that we have booked, under CRS rulings we can be issued with an ADM (Agency Debit Memo) for $110 USD per sector per person. On a four sector ticket that amounts to $440 USD (not AUD$) per person , plus if this Airline booking was linked to a Hotel stay, which had a “non-refundable” booking ,with say a stay cost of $3,000, then we would be required to wear that cost as well.”
Some Travel Agencies worldwide have had to close their doors when such incidents have occurred, hence persistent agency focussing on accuracy, high standards and repeated rechecking of data entries is imperative.These ADM costs (fines) cannot be disputed as they remain on our computers historical data , date and time stamped, forever.
We accept such responsibilities as part of the professional standards we work within .
TIME: HEAR HOW IMPORTANT TIME IS FOR US ALL.
If you place a value on the limited time we have in our lifespan- consider these facts
The current CoronaVirus is causing major losses of time, but even prior to this event the facts about wasting TIME has not changed. We respect your time and ask that you respect our time.
RISK MANAGEMENT: Many travellers invest a huge amount of time researching and then booking travel based on the limited options,media influenced or expensively marketed choices out there in the public arena.
AXIS MANAGEMENT COMMENT: “Using the internet and other media researching is a good tool,, in fact I encourage it , as long as the sources are verifiable and factual. My biggest concerns are when a consumer commits their travel booking and their money, thereby trusting whom they are dealing with plus being convinced that they understand the complex booking conditions they have accepted. Add to this releasing their private data and ID to whomever! , can be very risky at best and fatal at worst. If all goes well, then that is fine but if personal data is compromised or money paid is unsecured, especially into the hands of foreign entities then the time and cost to engage overseas or Australian lawyers to get money back, or complain about undelivered services or to amend or cancel travel plans is a huge problem. In the past 42 years ,during my many media Q and A sessions, a constant consumer problem was when they have had hassles after they admitted in chasing “the best advertised deal” or “lowest prices” without consideration of the possible implications that may erupt…..“
WASTING TIME : Many Airlines or suppliers can have your phone call placed “on-hold” , sometimes chatting with people who may not have a clue of what you want or attempting to communicate with an overseas language call centre or after a long wait period, having your call ”drop out” , sometimes wasting 5-7 hours or hearing “please ring back later” message.
Email bookings or queries can also be frustrating when confronted with automated email answers or a chatroom’s inability to assist or passing personal data online via cyberspace.
The need to use some Afterhours or Emergency contact avenues may present you with a call-centre automated response or humans who do not know who you are or cannot (or will not!) retrieve your important travel Itinerary.
With Axis Travel Centre, you always get to someone who either knows you personally or can communicate with your travel advisor, retrieve your travel booking with speed, efficiency and civility. TESTIMONIALS
Our internal office protocols, during office hours, are based on a KPI to answer phone calls within 4 rings or reply to emails within 1-3 hours, with the ability for our staff and contractors to be contactable 24 x 7.
“If we have booked , say ten components ,for a client and the “domino affect” comes into play with one component needing to be amended or cancelled, thereby affecting the other nine connected components, we would be able to then proceed and chronologically attend to these, which we are legally obliged to do so anyway, which is a priceless advantage, as we are entrusted as the one-contact reliable base”
We speak your language, so we de-stress and de-confuse the entire travel process.
Time is absolutely not refundable, impossible to be credited, regarded as our most precious and priceless commodity, that no amount of money can buy.
AXIS MANAGEMENT COMMENT: “The services of Axis Travel Centre remain personalized, professional, efficient and effective, striving to deliver travel options and expert advice to you 99% of the time, allowing us 1% deviation as we are all fallible humans!”
Our motto: “Where professional advice and quality service matter most” still remains our mantra today.
Thank you for your patience, understanding & loyalty as we enter our 42nd year in what we do best.
Director and Manager – Parent of Axis Travel Centre, -a company born in June 1978.