Wizeline Helps AirAsia Launch Two New Applications to Bundle Flights & Hotels for the First Time

Wizeline Helps AirAsia Launch Two New Applications to Bundle Flights & Hotels for the First Time

We aspire to be more than an airline. Our objective is to have non-airline revenues account for at least half of our total revenues within the next 5 years. This project was critical because it obviously is an adjacent business and should be easy for us to have deeper penetration in this market. It was key for us to deliver this project on time and focus as we did. We will always be grateful for the project with Wizeline because I think it will pay off in the medium to long term."

Pablo Sanz

Chief Technology Officer, AirAsia Super App

Executive Summary

AirAsia is the ASEAN region’s largest low-cost airline headquartered in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, and has been named as the world’s best low-cost airline for 11 years running by Skytrax. It operates domestic and international flights to more than 165 destinations in 25 countries. 

The company is expanding fast across its travel, e-commerce, and fintech verticals with the aim to become Asean’s leading super app, currently offering more than 10 additional services along with their flights. Two of these services include a hotel booking service and a service to bundle the purchase of hotel and flights together, now known as SNAP. Previously, AirAsia provided these services through a third-party white-labeled application, which enabled AirAsia to run these two business lines. However, it limited the airline from customizing the application and modifying the information to align with their business goals.

The Opportunity

AirAsia wanted to stop using the third-party application and launch two new applications called Hotel and SNAP as replacements to serve the two business lines. The Hotel application provides a quick and convenient way to book your stay at any destination in the world while the SNAP application offers a speedy and easy way to book your entire journey with the cheapest flight and your favorite hotel in a snap, bringing customers a new way to fly anchored in convenience and value. 

From a business perspective, the new solution allows AirAsia to have more control over product customization as well as the prices and deals that they can offer.

Why Wizeline?

AirAsia is a company that embraces digital transformation, which made them an excellent fit for Wizeline’s services. AirAsia’s technical processes are developed and mature, from execution to operational processes, and the airline partnered efficiently with the technology culture of Wizeline. This project was run out of Wizeline’s Vietnam office, which has worked on numerous products built on Google Cloud Platform (GCP). Wizeline’s GCP expertise was critical as AirAsia hosts most of its applications on GCP exclusively. Moreover, AirAsia and Wizeline’s shared approach and understanding of user experience unified the team in designing products focused on AirAsia’s customers and its needs.

The work style was smooth, and the collaboration was amazing. We had points when we had to negotiate, but the team was agile and managed to adapt to our requirements. It was a very enriching project because our teams managed to learn a lot in the process. I attended the final wrap-up meeting with the Wizeline team - everyone was pleased but also a little bit sad that our engagement was ending.”

Pablo Sanz

Chief Technology Officer, AirAsia Super App

The Challenge

  • Switch from PWA: The AirAsia technical team wanted to switch from PWA (Progressive Web Application) for mobile applications because of its low performance on the smartphones that most of their customers use. This decision meant that Wizeline had to build a total of four applications from scratch, which included two web applications and two mobile applications for both SNAP and Hotel.
  • Fixed timelines: The Wizeline team had tight deadlines: three months for the SNAP MVP to go live and six months for both SNAP and Hotel to be available in all supported regions. AirAsia had already invested in a product marketing campaign, so the deadlines weren’t flexible from the beginning. 
  • Integration with the existing app: The Hotel and SNAP applications had to be integrated into the existing AirAsia super app for iOS and Android.

Our Solution

  • Fast and stable releases: React and React Native were chosen as the core technologies in our solution stack. This combination helped us build the project fast to meet the deadline and provided comfortable stability to launch safely.
  • Reusable components: Product features were built on top of components and logic with reusability in mind, following Phoenix (AirAsia’s design system) from product management to development and quality assurance.

 

  • Robust and resilient architecture: Our technical architecture and design enabled us to build mobile applications as stand-alone applications during development and as isolated modules with interfaces to be integrated with the existing AirAsia super app. This helped to remove dependencies and enabled a faster and efficient feature development phase.

  • Ensured quality: The product’s quality was guaranteed by effective automated tests, reducing manual testing effort.

The Results

The Hotel and SNAP web applications are now live and can be found on the AirAsia super app and AirAsia.com. The iOS and Android versions of the applications are integrated with the existing AirAsia super app. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic halting almost all international travel in 2020, AirAsia was able to tap into its domestic travel market with innovative deals. It partnered with 5-star luxury hotels to offer attractively priced SNAP flight-and-hotel bundles via weekly flash sales. These sales were a hit – over 2,000 room nights were sold in four hours.

We were very happy with the delivery. We did have to reduce the scope a bit to meet the delivery dates, but we moved very fast. We ended up delivering the cross-platform experience over that timeline. It’s tricky to measure success given COVID-19, but we achieved our technical KPIs. We also saw a very positive trend when we started doing promotional Wednesdays with partner hotels and saw an increase toward the end of 2020. We’re looking forward to a great rebound in travel demand as more people receive vaccinations across the region.”

Pablo Sanz

Chief Technology Officer, AirAsia Super App

Hotel web application – Desktop

Hotel native application – Mobile

 

SNAP web application – Desktop

SNAP native application – Mobile

About Wizeline

Wizeline is a software development and design services company with operations in the U.S., Mexico, Vietnam, Thailand, Australia, and Spain. Wizeline partners with global enterprises and scaling startups to build end-to-end digital products. If you’d like to learn more, please visit www.wizeline.com or check out more case studies.


Share this case study