AirAsia’s Logistics Division Launches Blockchain-Based Cargo Booking System, Freightchain

AirAsia’s Logistic department Teleport has turned to blockchain for Cargo booking as the airline services launched Freightchain, a decentralized cargo booking system. The airlines made an announcement for the same on April 16 which claimed that the new Freightchain for bidding and booking cargo would be first of its kind in the airline industry.

The new blockchain-powered Freightchain would allow anyone, be it shoppers or freight forwarders to instantly book and confirm their booking in any of the 247 cargo flights of AirAsia. The new blockchain-based cargo booking system would replace the old-age time consuming and tiring process of email exchanges.

How Will Freightchain Work

Unlike the traditional cargo booking process, Frieghtchain connects consumers with freight forwarders in real-time who is connected with the airlines at all times. The booking database is kept on a blockchain to get all the booking data in real-time, thus making it easier, quicker and efficient for everyone to book and confirm the shipment.

In the traditional process, a shipper would first contact the freight forwarders telling them about their shipping needs, the freight forwarder would then contact the airlines to check the availability of the booking and flights. They would later get back to the shipper telling them about the availability of the time slot they were looking for and after that if the shipper decides whether to book or not. Freightchain cuts this complex procedure into a simple two-step process.

The chief technology officer of the project Vishal Batra explained that the blockchain-based network has been put in place to help in streamlining the shipment process during the ongoing pandemic and save lives. He explained that the launch during these troubled times was intentional and explained,

“We deliberately launched Freightchain during this period of uncertainty within global supply chains, caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Agile software platforms like Freightchain help to connect uneven supply and demand amidst a rapidly evolving environment. Trust and transparency are needed now more than ever.”

The test run for the project was done for a shipment of pharmaceutical cargo from Banglore, India to Ulan Bator Magnolia when there was no direct flight available between the two countries.

The shipment had to go through kula Lumpur and the Freightchain was utilized to confirm bookings of flights from three different countries in real-time with the use of smart contracts. In the absence of the blockchain-based system, it would have taken a lot of hours and numerous calls before the booking would have been possible.

“Freightchain simplified the booking process and confirmed the itinerary 10 times faster for shippers by programmatically discovering the available routes with connecting flights within the shipper's budget and passing on significant cost savings to shippers.

For the airlines, the dynamic on-demand interlining of flights helped improve otherwise underutilized flights.”

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