AirVolution Hackathon 2017 Shows AirAsia's Focus on Digital Innovation

As a true digital airline, innovation has always been at the heart of AirAsia.

In fact, AirAsia is one of the first companies to introduce the very useful online check-in service in so many territories and it's also arguably the global airline that's most active in engaging customers in social media.

AirVolution Hackathon

In line with this brand's stand when it comes to adapting the latest technology and digital services, on March 18, 2019, AirAsia formally launched its first ever AirVolution Hackathon competition where more than a hundred participants from almost 20 countries - including the Philippines - are challenged to create an application or software that could address travel-related issues and concerns.

AirVolution Hackathon

According to AirAsia's Group CEO, Mr. Tony Fernandes, "We believe that digital revolution will take Air Asia to another level; Another level in terms of making it easier to fly, easier to sell, and giving our customers products that they really want. And obviously, at the same time, we that digital space will enable us to cut costs and hence, translate those savings to lower airfares."

AirVolution Hackathon

"So today is our first step because I told my brilliant management team that there's no way we can do it all, and so we want to get ideas from people who fly us, from people who know us, from people that we fly to to help us build this new digital airline. And what better way than to start off with the first hackathon. This will be the first time in engaging the young and old and middle-aged entrepreneurial in digital economy in Asia. And step two would be - hopefully - to launch AirAsia Labs to be an incubator to fund some of you to build new businesses and new careers," he added.

AirVolution Hackathon

This year, two teams from the Philippines are part of the competition. I am personally very happy to see them here proudly carrying and waving our flag:

Filipino Hackathon App Developers
Team Algorithm

Filipino Hackathon App Developers
Team Swoosh Swoosh

In this two-day competition held at AirAsia's gorgeous and spacious RedQ Headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, teams of participants would need to address at least one of these three concerns via an application that they will develop themselves, making use of AirAsia Flight API, Resource Booths, or Cloud Storage Services:

1. How do you reduce guests’ waiting times at the airport, from check-in to boarding?
2. How do you profile AirAsia fans based on their digital social footprints to improve customer experience?
3. How do you offer AirAsia guests the best flights and tours at lowest prices, as well as the best itineraries?

AirVolution Hackathon

Only one winning team will be announced at the end of the competition on March 19, 2017. The winner will receive 25,000 RM, 100,000 AirAsia BIG Points, and 5X return flights to any AirAsia destination.

Update as of 3PM March 19, 2017: In the end, Team Aviato from Singapore won the prize with their application that suggests real-time AirAsia destinations and promos to users who like or share travel photos and stories in social media. It's an interesting concept that captured the fancy of the judges as well as that of the other participants.

AirAsia AirVolution Hackathon

To wrap this up, let me share the inspiring words that Mr. Tony Fernandes gave to the participants before the start of the hackathon:

"AirAsia is all about dreams. AirAsia is about creating dreams. In fact, in many ways, we are a fairy tale airline. Four guys in the music business who knew nothing about airlines. And now, we carry more 62 million people and one the world's best low-cost airline eight years in a row. So we hope today that we would start helping some of you, smart, budding entrepreneurs from all over the world, all over Asia, to be able to live some of your dreams. We really hope that you can ride with us and who knows? Maybe one day, you may help create the new Google, the new Amazon, or the new Microsoft. [...] Dare to dream; Believe the unbelievable, and never take 'no' for an answer."

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