Vueling Airline’s Plans for Innovation Hub in Barcelona

by Chantal Welch
A flight landing at Barcelona Airport

Vueling Airlines has announced plans to create an innovation hub at its base in Barcelona in collaboration with Iberia, Airbus, and other Spanish institutions. The aim of the hub is to find innovative solutions to improve the air transport sector.

Vueling Airlines Airbus A320 taking off

Vueling Airlines Airbus A320 taking off © Julian Herzog via Wikipedia

Aviation’s Survival Strategy

The key objectives for airlines during the pandemic are survival, recovery, and innovation. The global downturn has led the industry to breaking point and there is a real need for new solutions and innovation.

The focus of industry businesses has shifted to liquidity and raising money by evaluating all potential funding sources. Airlines have had to negotiate special concessions with governments and partners, postpone projects, revise budgets and continue to build their commercial strategies and brands through uncertain times.

Airline Apps

Airline Apps © Chantal Welch

Innovation: The New Operating Model for Airlines

The survival of the aviation sector is highly dependent on extra funding, rebuilding passenger confidence, and technological innovation.

Technology, digitalization, and innovation can create demand and a revenue boost while reducing costs. The pandemic is an opportunity for innovative thinking, enabling the industry to transform its processes for the better and improve the end-to-end journey. Innovation is now the new operating model for airlines.

Vueling taking off

Vueling aircraft in flight © Daniel Eledut

Digital Transformation of the Aviation Ecosystem

In order to survive the pandemic, Spanish low-cost carrier Vueling Airlines has benefited from €4,000 million in assistance funds from the European Union.

The airline plans to use this funding to create the International Centre for Digital Transformation of the Aviation Ecosystem, based in the city of Barcelona. Vueling will take advantage of Barcelona’s position as the center of European innovation, to execute its plan for digital innovation and aviation transformation to sustainability, alongside collaborators Iberia and Airbus.

Barcelona, Spain

Barcelona, Spain © Enes via Unsplash

A spokesperson for Vueling said:

“We want to make Barcelona a benchmark in the research, design and implementation of digital tools that help transform airspace, airports and airlines. Our objective is to develop a productive fabric and a training and innovation campus of world reference.”

Vueling coming into land

Vueling aircraft landing © Cor Gaasbeek

Vueling’s latest initiative to find solutions to improve the aviation sector is part of a wide range of initiatives by the airline. Keen to help the environment, the airline has banished 100% of plastic products on board. It’s also part of the Flightpath Net Zero program, whose objective is to reach zero CO2 emissions by 2050. The planned innovation hub will enable Vueling to fulfill its ambition of transforming the aviation sector and championing aviation sustainability.

What are your thoughts on Vueling’s innovation hub in Barcelona? Let us know in the comments below.

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