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Sustainable travel takes center stage during Amadeus hackathon

Sustainability in travel was the focus of Amadeus’ worldwide hackathon, which saw more than 2,500 student registrants. The hackathon offered students an opportunity to code on a cloud native platform and compete for prizes. These included internships with Amadeus and other industry partners.

The virtual event, held over the course of October, saw over 100 university students advance to participate in the final challenges related to Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Emission Offsetting and Green Hotels, among others.

A member of the team that won the ‘Sustainable Development Challenge’ and recent computer science graduate from the Netherlands, Kimberly Dijkmans, said, “I really enjoyed participating in this hackathon and I discovered a lot about sustainability in travel. The topic is very important to me personally – so the lessons I gained from this hackathon will go a long way towards my future career decisions. I also had an opportunity to work with a diverse group of people from around the world and am happy to have made new friends who are passionate about the same subject. I also feel my coding skills improved: I learned Java at university – but through this hackathon – I developed new skills. I used Figma for the first time to create a prototype and React to create a web app. We also worked on GitHub as a team – which was new for me. The feeling of being part of a community was great. Amadeus did a lot to make us all feel involved – we had webinars, mentor sessions, and the Work Adventure platform created a sense of togetherness.”

Dijkmans’ team developed ‘FlyLight’, an app that rewards travelers when the weight of their luggage remains below an airlines’ luggage allowance. This helps airlines reduce the amount of fuel they need for certain flights.

During the two weeks, participants received insights and support from leaders of some of the biggest players in the travel and tech industries, including representatives from Air France-KLM, Etihad Airways, Microsoft, Red Hat, MongoDB, CHOOOSE, Woosmap, Airbus, American Airlines, United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), Saving the Amazon and others. The students also enjoyed a fun coding platform, a virtual DJ, yoga sessions, and interactions with talented mentors.

Christophe Bousquet, Chief Technology Officer, Amadeus, said, “My congratulations to all of the student winners of our worldwide hackathon. The actions we take today to make travel more sustainable could have a profound impact on how the future looks. This hackathon was about empowering the next generation of coders to make a difference. We view sustainability and humanity’s response to climate change as one of the greatest challenges of our lifetime. As such, this hackathon was a prime opportunity to reflect on the way travel and coding can deliver a positive environmental and social impact. The entire travel industry must put its best minds together to come up with the innovative solutions required to create a better future.”

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