Airline group Lufthansa is aiming to modernize the way its loyalty program works and plans to roll out a “radically simplified” version in early 2024.
Gerald Schloegl, vice president of commerce and digital channel solutions, told this week’s Altitude 22 airline executive summit in Dubai that the carrier will be data driven.
He said the airline aims to “completely change” the way it communicates with customers by introducing a traveler identity platform for all of the group’s brands.
“From inspiration to purchase, we think it’s a very direct relationship. But for most of our clients it’s a big mess. There is a lot of friction there.
“We also have a lot of friction in our payment processes. This is the reality. It’s time to bring harmony to this journey.
“It is important to understand that the customer journey is not a single experience, it is a connected experience. We need to deliver a product based on customer data.”
Schloegl described loyalty as “more than a program.” “It’s not a one-way street,” he added, “we’d like to give back to long-term loyal customers.”
Lufthansa is working on a “lifetime concept” for travelers with Senator status in its Miles and More program and has developed a challenge center to offer more rewards to loyal customers.
Schloegl said Lufthansa will put the customer at the “center” of the experiences it offers by providing “great basics,” including more automated and self-service processes.
Lufthansa Group’s Traveler ID platform collects data about customers so the airline can simplify the experience and deliver it quickly, he added.
The carrier “needs to manage complexity for all of our customers” and be consistent, personal and rebuild trust lost during the COVID pandemic.
“We lost a lot [of trust] for the last two years,” Schloegl said, “so we need to rebuild that.”
The airline of the Austrian Airlines group launched a new app at the beginning of the year that offers a “connected experience” and intends to develop it further based on user feedback.
Working with Amadeus, Lufthansa is developing a “consistent booking flow” for all its customer touchpoints, including web and chat, to be unveiled in early 2023.
The operator is also building a separate payment hub where the customer can store their details and preferences, enabling one-click payment functionality.
The hub will also allow users to store coupons and accept refunds directly in their digital wallet.