At the African Business Travel Association (ABTA) Corporate Travel Forum in Lagos last week, Travel Payments in Africa came under the spotlight during a discussion on the tech and payment revolution in business travel.
Olayinka Olaleye, Operations Manager at Amadeus shared key insights into technology and payment developments in Nigeria.
He discussed the four pillars of IATA’s New Gen ISS, a program launched to deliver faster, safer and more cost-effective and relevant financial settlement services and solutions to airlines and travel agents.
Olaleye mentioned the three levels of travel agent accreditation, the Remittance Holding Capacity (RHC) that will ensure a safer selling process; the Global Default Insurance (GDI) that will offer travel agents a flexible financial security option; and IATA EasyPay.
Olaleye pointed out that B2B travel payments are changing with travel agencies now keen to adopt virtual cards as well as Amadeus B2B Wallet Prepaid. He explained that Amadeus B2B Wallet is a virtual card payment product which allows travel agencies to optimise their payments to suppliers regardless of whether they are selling offline or online.
Amadeus B2B Wallet Prepaid
Each Amadeus B2B Wallet Prepaid virtual card number is unique. This means travel agencies generate a virtual account number each time they want to pay. Regardless whether it is a hotel, an airline or any other travel supplier. And they can do this in Amadeus Selling Platform, Amadeus Selling Platform Connect or via Webservices. Eventually, the prepaid virtual card replaces invoicing, wire transfers, bank debit cards, cheques and cash advances.
Olaleye explained that virtual cards can help travel agencies to reduce fraud, improve internal reconciliation processes, save money and automate their business.
Also for airlines, virtual cards bring benefits, according to Olaleye, as the option is low cost and transparent and can considerably improve the airlines’ cash flow. Furthermore, B2B Wallet is easy to set up with no impact on revenue accounting. All it takes is one form to be signed by the acquirer. B2B Wallet also allows airlines to drive a commercial strategy with travel agencies in a multichannel approach.
Olaleye ended his presentation with an overview of Amadeus Travel Payments: