Brazilian Airline Gol Owes Its Huge Success to the Internet

Gol, Brazil’s low cost, low fare airline finished its second consecutive year as one of the largest e-commerce companies in Brazil.

Internet ticket sales in 2005, at approximately US$ 1.2 billion (2.6 billion reais), accounted for 81% of the Company’s US$ 1.5 billion  (3.2 billion reais) total sales.

Gross operating revenues (passengers flown) in 2005 were approximately US$ 1.3 billion (2.8 billion reais), representing a net operating revenue of approximately US$ 1.27 billion (2.7 billion reais).

Gol revolutionized the way Brazilians purchase airline tickets by eliminating the traditional "paper ticket," which reduced the Company’s costs and simplified passengers’ access to GOL’s services.

In addition to purchasing tickets, passengers can also check-in and change flight reservations online.

"The e-commerce platform is essential for Gol to continue to operate under the low cost, low fare model. The Company plans on continuing to stimulate the use of Internet as an advantageous tool on purchasing airline tickets," says Tarcí­sio Gargioni, vice-president of Marketing and Services at Gol Linhas Aereas.

A large part of the online sales’ success is due to the facility of this particular sales channel. In the fourth quarter of 2005, GOL’s Web site registered 1.5 million unique visitors, an almost 50% increase over 2004.

In addition to purchasing tickets on the Internet, GOL’s customers can also buy tickets and check-in via Internet or WAP enabled cellular phone. This service is currently offered through partnerships with telecom operators Vivo, Amazônia Celular and Telemig Celular.

GOL currently offers over 440 daily flights to 49 major business and travel destinations in Brazil, Argentina, Bolivia, Uruguay and Paraguay with substantial expansion opportunities.

Mercopress – www.mercopress.com

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