Do you remember buying airline tickets before the Internet?

Sachin Mittal
Sachin Mittal

Do you remember buying airline tickets before the Internet? I’m guessing that if you are a pre-nineties’ person, chances are that you do, and not with very fond memories! Because, if not anything, it was an ordeal…almost like a daylong activity or even more! One had to call up a number of travel agents to get the basic information on ticket price, etc and then physically go to an airline’s or a travel agent’s office to pay the money and get them! Wait, what if you had to cancel your tickets? Phew! Less said the better! In fact, if you ask anyone and everyone what has been the biggest boon in the last decade, the one thundering chorus that would echo from millions of voices would undoubtedly be – Internet and E commerce ! And yes, when you come to think of it…its true, isn’t it?

Coming back to that airline ticket…now that you have the World Wide Web and Ecommerce, you can visit a number of travel websites to compare travel dates, flight duration and ticket prices from multiple airlines. What’s more, you can also check out hotel options, reserve ones you like, book a car rental package, sign up for a two day skiing course and pay for everything in a matter of minutes with your credit card in the wee hours of night after work. Simply put…nothing can beat the convenience that ecommerce provides!

What exactly is Ecommerce?

Ecommerce or Electronic Commerce refers to commercial transactions done electronically. With growing number of people accessing and using the internet globally, especially with the immense growth of smartphones in the last decade, ecommerce is fast gaining importance and by now has become a way of life for many.

How Does Ecommerce Work?

In our case, the starting point is the person who wants to buy the airline ticket and his computer or smartphone or any internet enabled device from where he/she connects to the internet through an ISP (Internet Service Provider). Once he connects to the internet, with the help of web browsers such as Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, etc and Search engines such as Google, our man locates a particular destination on the network. So, for example he would type in ‘flights from Delhi to London’ on the Search Engine and land on a relevant air ticket booking website. On the website, products and services are usually arranged as if in a virtual store with photographs and detailed product information. In this case, various flight information along with their airline companies, cost, timing, whether refundable or not and even alternate flight suggestions on consecutive days are given. After the customer decides on which one to go for he adds it to his cart, provide basic information such as name, address and then proceeds to the payment getaway. At this point he needs to decide his mode of payment – cash on delivery, credit card, net banking, etc. He keys in the relevant information where required and with one click, his purchase is done!

How Does Ecommerce Make Your Life Easy?

Now that you have thought about how you would buy an airline ticket if you didn’t have the internet, answering this is easy, right?

  1. First, ecommerce provides you a path to a marketplace that is not restricted to a locality. You can choose products and services of any type, of any brand and from anywhere in the world.
  2. Internet is a 24×7 affair and hence you can research on your flight ticket, compare rates and even check up on related stuffs such as hotels, etc as per your convenience – any time in the day or night.
  3. Thirdly and by far the most important – ecommerce provides you the boon of speed shopping without leaving home or taking leave from work!The previous day long ticket booking affair become a matter of minutes for you.
  4. Ecommerce gives you the convenience of easy price and product comparisons and more often than not throws at you offers and discounted rates specifically for online purchases.
  5. Lastly, any and every information about the product or service, even if it requires a video to demonstrate how it is to be used is right there for you to explore and understand before spending your money.

So you see, Ecommerce is all about that…to buy and sell and transact what you want, whenever you want to. Simply put, to have the world at your fingertips!