Friday, November 02, 2007

Thomas Cook Group integration problems

There was a bit of chatter yesterday at the Travolution Conference regarding some problems Thomas Cook is having with the integration of some elements of MyTravel's content and functionality - and some details are now beginning to emerge.

The Register reckons the website is down and has been for most of the week.

Since the story was first posted just after midnight this morning, a holding page on is now directing users to the main MyTravel website as all flights are now sold there.

This has apparently been the case since 28 October - until earlier today a message said "essential maintenance to our booking process" had led to the curtailment of service until further notice. A ever so slight change of words there.

Our information said the migration of flight booking data from MyTravel onto the Thomas Cook platform was supposed to take a few weeks, but the two systems would run concurrently.

At some point on Sunday night the system fell over, which led the MyTravelLite site to lose its booking functionality, and therefore why the whole thing was pulled down.

Thomas Cook said this week:

"All websites were taken down from 8pm on the Saturday evening until the following Monday morning, whilst the essential planned maintenance was carried out to shift to one reservation system.

"A holding page was put in place explaining the maintenance and timings to customers. Note that these changes impact all sales channels and not only our websites.

"A series of planned tasks had to be under-taken to complete this process and full end to end testing was completed. Unfortunately some of these tasks took a little longer than originally anticipated and as a result the holding page with appropriate links on website was not replaced. All continuing core websites went live again on Monday as planned."
[Alex Bainbridge offers his usual offbeat analysis of the situation - in fact, it's so offbeat there isn't any actual analysis at all, he just slams the travel press for not reporting it sooner. Fair point. I've offered our excuses on his post]

Kevin May, editor, Travolution

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