In Brief

Etihad Airways launches AI Academy

ETIHAD AIRWAYS has partnered with Microsoft to launch the first ever in-house AI Academy in the region, which will revolutionise the way the airline serves its customers by upskilling its workforce, optimising operations and creating alternate revenue. 

Etihad has adopted Office 365 as part of its strategy to become a more efficient organisation. The group’s senior leadership has also spearheaded initiatives for the automation of numerous business processes, to enhance day-to-day operations. The airline plans to provide structured, flexible education programmes for its employees that will allow them to use AI and other smart technologies to ‘supercharge’ their productivity and innovation. The training seminars will be carefully designed around the roles of their attendees, for maximum impact. 

As part of the AI Academy, all Etihad employees will be given access to an online training programme, and instructor led classes, to drive companywide AI literacy, empowering every employee to deliver more value to the company and its customers.


Udrive innovates to make travel affordable

UDRIVE, the app-based pay-per-minute car rental service, has recently introduced three ground-breaking new developments: Udrive Intercity, Udrive Premium Cars and Udrive in Ajman.

Udrive’s Intercity service allows users to drive to and from Abu Dhabi, Sharjah and Ajman. An Intercity service fee of just Dh75 ($20.42) will be charged in addition to the normal trip charges, enabling customers to drive, for example, from Sharjah/Ajman to Abu Dhabi or vice versa, and end the trip there.

Udrive has added a variety of brand-new premium cars, such as the Mercedes-Benz A-Class and Ford Mustang, to the fleet. Customers can enjoy these iconic luxury cars at a price of just 70 fils per minute or Dh279 ($75.96) per day, including fuel, parking, insurance, and a 200 km allowance per day.

Drivers can now avail of Udrive’s outstanding services in Ajman. Drive from anywhere to everywhere, starting at just 60 fils per minute and Dh144 ($39.20) per day, including fuel, parking and insurance! Customers can also enjoy driving between Sharjah and Ajman at no additional charge.


Four Seasons Hotels expands its chat service

FOUR SEASONS Hotels and Resorts has once again expanded its multi-channel chat service with the recent addition of WhatsApp, the world’s most popular messaging platform. Since launch, Four Seasons Chat has exchanged over 3.5 million messages, allowing guests to connect with real people on property in real time, for any need, creating more opportunities to personalize the travel experience.

“The guest experience is our top priority, whether on property or when engaging with our brand digitally,” said Christian Clerc, president, Worldwide Hotel Operations, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts.


RwandAir and Amadeus extend partnership

RWANDAIR, the national carrier of the Republic of Rwanda, announced its partnership with Amadeus to adopt technology that will allow its customers to benefit from improved efficiency, a better experience and increased convenience.

RwandAir was recently named the 10th most-improved airline in the world by Skytrax, and has built a reputation for excellent on-time performance. Having previously provided RwandAir with distribution services, Amadeus will now roll out solutions across passenger systems, revenue management, loyalty management, payments, and data & analytics.

The extended partnership intends to support RwandAir’s plans of expanding its network and fleet. Yvonne Manzi Makolo, RwandAir CEO, said: “As one of the fastest growing airlines in Africa, RwandAir is committed to providing an impeccable customer experience that will fuel our continued expansion in the years to come. We look forward to an extended partnership with Amadeus that will provide us with the world class passenger services solution with an upgrade of our reservations, ticketing, departure control, e-commerce, market intelligence and loyalty systems." The benefits of using the Amadeus’s Passenger System (Altéa) also extend to Amadeus’ global travel seller network.