Delta first airline to sell tickets on Facebook

Delta Air Lines has become the first airline to allow Facebook users in the U.S. to buy flight tickets without having to leave the social network. Dubbed ‘Ticket Window’, users can select different search criteria and then view results from within the application, including route options, aircraft type, times and inclusive prices. Once a fare is selected the user can enter the usual passenger and payment details and the booking is complete. Facebook members can also share their travel plans with friends on the social network. Delta says future releases will contain more social elements, such as coordinating group travel more easily. 

Delta says it plans to expand the Ticket Window functionality to other sites, including online banner ads to allow full booking capabilities within the airline’s advertisements. Says Bob Kupbens, Delta’s vice president eCommerce, “Our customers are spending more time online and are looking for new ways to connect with us. “We’re now bringing Delta to our customers rather than the other way around.”

Today, almost every airline uses Facebook to promote sales and interact with their ‘fans’, while Easyjet is one of the few carriers to offer flight search functionality on Facebook, with the user being re-directed to the airline website to obtain results and make bookings. During the volcanic ash disruptions in April 2010, KLM made it possible to rebook flights via a special tab on its Facebook page. 

As part of a wider plan to improve the online experience for customers, Delta has also given its homepage a thorough clean-looking redesign, with the rest of the website to follow in the coming months. Other digital media initiatives include making its airport kiosks more user-friendly and the launch of a new iPhone app. Delta also recently started providing real-time travel assistance (@deltaassist) via Twitter.

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