Grounding of the Boeing 737 Max
The grounding of the Boeing 737 Max has been, and continues to be unprecedented. I am writing with an update on this developing situation, which should answer the many questions you may have.
We have opened dialogues with the Minister of Transport’s office, as well as the leadership of the relevant airlines, so that we might stay on top of these events as they unfold, and ultimately move quickly to support our travellers if needed.
This event has a global impact, as it represents the removal of hundreds of planes across dozens of prominent airlines. The grounding alone is projected to cost twenty-three million dollars a day. Approximately six percent of the Air Canada fleet is comprised of the Boeing 737 Max craft and alone, operates approximately seventy-five 737 Max flights daily.
All flights, Toronto to Vancouver/Calgary for example, are already completely booked for the next 8 days. Those planning to travel in the coming weeks need to reserve immediately.
The airlines’ response to the event was delayed, and a full day had elapsed by the time they provided us with instruction which, initially, was for to contact the call centre, and manage each reservation individually. Their systems and call centers were overloaded. The airline web sites slowed down to the point where they timed out and their call centers experienced a 2 to 3 hour wait time.
Effectively, we decided to take matters into our own hands, and on Tuesday, March 12th at 8 am, three hours prior to the Canadian Minister of Transport’s decision and 6 hours before the FAA announcment, we pulled a report by aircraft type, and tasked a team to call each passenger affected by order of departure date. We knew that the airlines would not be able to provide seats to all the passengers from the grounded aircrafts, and as a result, we changed every flight, and told the travellers that we would hold their places for them while we waited for the airlines to issue waivers and cancel all charges.
We have handled over two thousand travellers since this crisis began, and we haven’t finished yet. Scheduled Max flights are still in the system for April and beyond. The airlines are taking equipment that was scheduled to be fitted by WIFI or in line to be repainted and repurposing aircraft on routes where they were flying the 737 Max. In many cases the aircraft that replaced the Max has less capacity and dozens of travellers are left waiting to get home.
As you can see, our actions had a tremendous impact on our travellers. Here is a message from one of our customers:
Tuesday, March 12: “Team Encore — you and your team are simply the best! Just arrived at Calgary International Airport and, checking-in to the lounge, overheard the guy in front me being told by the concierge that everything happened so quickly, and that all Montreal options are booked until Friday morning! Thanks to you, I’ll be home tonight. We are lucky to have you.”
Taking care of your travellers’ time, comfort, and wellbeing are our first priorities. We will do everything in our power to ensure that every condition has been met and that expectations have been realized or exceeded.
Thank you for your confidence and patronage.
Your Dedicated Travel Team
Encore Travel and Serko Announce First North American Reseller Agreement for Zeno
Industry-Leading Travel Management Application Now Available to Voyages Encore Travel
Stamford, Connecticut— 05/29/2018 — Serko Ltd. (NZX:SKO), a leader in online travel booking
and expense management for business, and Montreal-based travel management company Voyages
Encore Travel Inc. announced today the first Zeno reseller agreement in North America.
The Zeno platform features innovative user interfaces for desktop and mobile as part of its travel
booking and expense solution for managed travel programs of any size. The application allows travel
category managers to gain actionable insights from bookings, drive cost savings and maintain
control, while providing the first truly new user experience to travelers in over a decade.
For travel management company (TMC) partners, Zeno offers advanced technology that uses
artificial intelligence to continually improve the user experience. Zeno’s superior interface helps
increase adoption of the tool, which reduces “rogue” bookings made outside the managed travel
program. The platform also offers more complete, easily-accessible data to TMCs to help their
clients optimize their travel spend.
Monique Mardinian, CEO of Voyages Encore Travel, said, “We are very pleased to announce our
partnership with Serko and serve as their pilot TMC reseller for Zeno in North America. The
technology they bring to the corporate travel marketplace with this tool is incredible, and I look
forward to the innovation that our partnership will spur within the travel industry.”
The reseller agreement will allow Encore Travel clients to select Zeno as their travel booking and
expense solution via the TMC starting today.
Rich Miller, General Manager, North America for Serko, said, “In signing this agreement, Serko and
Encore Travel are bringing together two leaders in the corporate travel and expense management
space. Encore Travel has served as a great partner and early adopter, and their innovative approach to
travel management will allow clients to better streamline purchasing and fulfillment of travel and
related services via Zeno. Overall, the response to the Zeno platform has been extremely positive so
far in North America, and we expect several more agreements to follow in the coming months.”
Serko is a leading travel and expense technology solution headquartered in New Zealand, used by
over 6,000 corporate entities and more than 50 Travel Management Companies who combined book
more than US$4.5 billion of travel a year through Serko’s platforms.
Zeno is Serko’s next generation travel management application, using intelligent technology,
predictive workflows and a global travel marketplace to transform business travel across the entire
Listed on the New Zealand Stock Exchange Main Board (NZX:SKO), Serko employs more than 100
people worldwide, and has its North American headquarters in Stamford, Conn.
Visit for more information.
About Encore Travel
Encore Travel is Canada’s largest ‘Canadian Owned’ corporate travel management company based
in Montreal, Quebec. The Encore Travel brand stands for premium quality service, and our team
strives every day to make the experience of business travel better and more enjoyable. This allows
the corporate traveler to spend their time on what really counts – the reason why.
As Canada’s Corporate Travel Experts, the number one priority of Encore Travel is to serve our
client’s travellers while delivering exceptional value to their company. We leverage industry leading
technologies, and our extensive data analysis capability to recommend specific business travel
solutions designed to create an exceptional travel experience.
Dots & Lines, on behalf of Serko
+1 (813) 784-1545
Marketing and Communications Specialist
Voyages Encore Travel Inc.