Rail Booking APIs: How to Sell Train Tickets from GDSs, Tech Providers, and Global Railway Carriers

Younger and lower income travelers use trains the most
Source:
TripBarometer 2016
  1. Some direct suppliers provide their own APIs
  2. There are different types of middlemen that offer standardized rail APIs
  3. Among those middlemen are GDSs
  1. Finding connections
  2. Displaying a schedule
  3. Ticketing and reservation

Rail APIs from GDSs: access to all main rail carriers

The inventory pool of all main GDSs

Amadeus APIs — time-tested and record-proven

  • Ticketing
  • Data on ticket trips
  • Rules for cancellation
  • Post-sales of the rail segments
  • Accommodations and supplements calculated together for all passengers in a PNR.
  • Data on a multi-destination schedule quote
  • Rules retrieving
  • Information on accommodation for each part of the trip with preferences included
  • Can create the booking reference both in the Amadeus system and on external parties

Sabre API — a mature solution with basic access

Video on How GDSs work
  • Rail schedules and availability
  • Train and connection search
  • Ticketing and travel documents generation
  • Railcards purchasing
  • Tour managing
  • Cancellation
  • Codes for stations
  • Reservations search by passenger/travel data
  • Reports
  • Seat maps

Travelport API — wired for air-rail booking

Middlemen Rail API Providers: complex technical solutions

Major rail carriers provided via middlemen

Trainline B2B API

Video on How Trainline Works
  • Combining carriers and ticket types
  • Default retailing logic for integrated solutions
  • Accessing reference data and unified fare Ts&Cs
  • Multilanguage & currency support
  • Integrating with Agent Tool
  • Complex after-sales and back-office activities
  • Splitting the connection to B2C tools

Omio Affiliate

  • Search and booking engine
  • APIs search
  • Fares comparing
  • Well-built train matching
  • Multi-language support
  • Search widget toll
  • Banners and assets integration
Main options inside the Omio Affiliate Program

Travel Fusion Rail API

  • Ticketing and fulfillment options
  • Reservation opportunities
  • Fare alternatives
  • Service choices
  • Post-booking activities

Trawex Platform

  • Extensive search
  • Seat maps
  • Availability for the whole week
  • Payment gateway
  • Multi-language and multi-currency support
  • Group booking.

Direct connection to major railway carriers: cheap and tech-demanding

North-American Railway Carriers

  • Preliminary reservation
  • Reservation management instruments
  • Trip planning tools
  • Payment processing
  • Amtrak eTicketing option
  • Sales reporting tools
  • Train routes availability
  • Group tour reservations
  • Stops and activities in all destinations tours
  • Sightseeing packages

European Railway Carriers

SNCF API options
  • Route and stops schedules
  • Journey tracking from and to “station” or “administrative region”
  • Next departures or arrivals
  • Autocomplete feature.
  • Pricing lists
  • Current departure time
  • Damaged roads and engineering work
  • Station lists, including those of Netherlands with Geodata
  • Travel recommendations
  • Schedule and schedule changes
  • Real-time arrival and departure predictions
  • Platform numbers
  • Delay estimates
  • Train cancellations
  • Real-time and static data on station facilities
  • Service disruption
  • Construction work
  • Planning routes
  • Calculating expenses
  • Establishing ticket availability via National Rail Enquiries digital channels.

Asian Railway Carriers

  • Seat availability
  • Regular PNR check
  • Live train status
  • Live station
  • Station search
  • Canceled and rescheduled trains

Australian Railway Carriers

  • Static timetables
  • Stations locations
  • Real-time alerts
  • Trips
  • Stops
  • Routes
  • Trips for each route
  • The stop times

Final thoughts on APIs in travel

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