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Thomas Cook Egypt slashes 30% off telecoms costs

Travel agent reduces telecommunications costs with converged voice and data network from Cisco Systems.

Thomas Cook has reduced its telecommunications costs by 30% with the deployment of a converged voice and data network from Cisco Systems. The solution removes the need to invest, maintain and upgrade two separate networks and enabled the business to make more efficient use of its bandwidth.

“Maintaining our position at the leading edge of the travel industry is only possible through continuous improvement to customer service and internal operations,” says Mounir Kamal, managing director for Thomas Cook Egypt.

“Cisco has a solid position as the worldwide leader in providing IP telephony and converged networking and its solution-based approach is proven to provide solid returns on investment,” he adds.

The network is also helping Thomas Cook improve customer satisfaction and employee productivity by delivering high levels of quality of service and information security across the travel agent’s organisation.

“Tourism and travel are an essential part of the economy in Egypt and across the Middle East, not surprisingly it is therefore a highly competitive market,” comments Yasser Elkady, Cisco’s regional manager for Egypt and North Africa.

“Competitiveness can be achieved via a number of methods — discounted fares, for example. In the long term, however, this tactic will have to be supported by an efficient internal information system, which will stand the tests of time,” he adds.

The network took just six weeks to deploy, including testing and evaluation. The network went live in April 2002. Thomas Cook’s converged network consists of Catalyst 2900 switches, Cisco 1720 routers and Cisco PIX Firewalls. Thomas Cook is currently investigating future projects including new IP telephony applications to increase employees’ productivity.

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