It’s 2023 and days before your Flybondi flight to Buenos Aires – except your mother just got sick and now you need to stay home in Córdoba to take care of her. You’re fine about missing the work conference, but you’re disappointed not to spend a few nights in BA. Fortunately, your flight ticket is an NFT, so you can easily swap in your colleague’s name or sell it on a secondary marketplace. It can’t be that straightforward, can it?
It already is with one airline and our predictions say it won’t be long before others follow suit. Hours of waiting on hold to reach customer service, confusing refund policies, and jumping through hoops to get ticket details amended are set to become a thing of the past thanks to blockchain technology and perhaps the biggest use case of utility NFTs yet.
Picture this: every seat on an airplane is tokenized. Your plane ticket is an NFT governed by a smart contract that enables secure, flexible, and efficient ticket distribution. It’s easier to manage, sell and transfer your ticket than ever before. This is precisely what TravelX is looking to achieve through its NFTickets technology built on Algorand. For the traveler, it acknowledges that sometimes life can be unpredictable and plans need to change. For airlines, it reduces customer service costs and offers a percentage of ticket sales on the secondary market.
The NFT is still yet to have its moment – and integration with travel could be it. The JPEG summer of mid-2021 saw floor prices of Bored Apes hit exorbitant highs and unheard-of digital artists were catapulted to fame for tokenizing their work on the blockchain. Celebrities, brands, and companies across industries dropped token collections in droves as momentum and excitement continued into 2022. This was a flash in the pan for the nascent NFT before crypto Twitter started demanding, “WEN UTILITY?”.
Calls for utility forced the NFT to prove its value and gave way to the rise of event admission tickets, membership to private clubs, gaming tokens, and digital wearables all being recorded on the blockchain. One industry that didn’t dive headlong into the NFT craze was travel. NFTs representing travel experience and memberships of hotel clubs were travel’s initial explorations into the blockchain. The tipping point hasn’t happened yet, but tokenizing airline seats could be just the ticket.
Flybondi is the first airline to tokenize 100% of its inventory with the support of TravelX and Algorand. This is a historic milestone for both NFT utility and the airline industry. Making airline tickets NFTs opens the door to seamless peer-to-peer transactions, reselling opportunities, bulk purchases, and innovative payment methods using NFTickets as collateral. Mauricio Sana, CEO of Flybondi, said “[this] demonstrates our commitment to innovation and providing our customers with the best possible experience.”
Algorand supplies the foundation for this advanced ticketing technology and secondary ticket marketplace. It was the blockchain of choice for TravelX due to its security, sustainability, and reliability – the chain’s sub-penny transaction fees no doubt sweetened the deal. TravelX joins the ranks of other vibrant NFT projects building on Algorand, including Rand Gallery, ALGOxNFT, Algogems, Shufl and Exa Market.
"We are thrilled to see our technology being utilized in such a unique way by TravelX. This likely represents the largest use-case of utility NFTs we’ve seen and something that could only happen with the reliability and scalability of the Algorand blockchain.”
- Staci Warden, CEO of Algorand Foundation
Over 60 airlines worldwide are in conversations with TravelX to explore the adoption of NFTickets, with blockchain technology benefiting both company and consumer. Flybondi’s Web3 debut is just the beginning for the airline industry. The tokenization of airline tickets could shake up the airline industry and provide unparalleled flexibility for travelers like never before.