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Hacking the night away: Amadeus Rail hackathon

July 13, 2017
Author: Cecile Jouve

The Amadeus Express Hack was a brand new feature of the 2017 Rail Innovation Forum: the first ever Amadeus Rail Hackathon! Participants coming from railways, travel agencies and from our rail team, worked together for 20h. The objective? To deliver a solution to solve an industry challenge. In this post, you will discover the experience of Cecile Jouve, one of the participants on this first #HackExpress 

When I first heard about it, I was still on maternity leave. My first reaction was: “Leaving my daughter so soon? Impossible, she can’t handle it!” But after a few people told me that I needed to “cut the cord” I started to change my mind. I do love hackathons and I’m also a big fan of innovation!

20h to solve a real rail industry challenge

Amadeus Rail Hackathon

Two weeks later, I found myself at the Amadeus Rail Innovation Forum!

After the welcome cocktail, the contest was officially launched: you have 20 hours to create and launch an idea solving a real industry challenge. 

This was the first time I had the chance to collaborate at the same time with Amadeus delegates, customers and start-ups.


collaboration and synergies to solve the challenge

And the brainstorming began: How can we leverage on synergies to provide a better rail customer experience?Our idea. Share IT Smart, was to facilitate the rail traveller getting off a train to share a taxi and its cost with other passengers to reach their final destination. Providers would integrate our solution into their mobile app and website to give their customers a competitive door-to-door travel experience

Amadeus Hackathon Jury

We had only a few hours left to impress the jury, made up of a specialist judges panel, Railway Gazette journalist Nick Kingsley and Amadeus’ Denis Lacroix and David Doctor

It was not a standard coding hackathon: the jury expected to see each business phase of our plan on stage, concepts and mockups design. During the day, we had the opportunity to interact with railways and travel agencies to get direct good insights from the rail industry.

The final decision: did we solve the challenge?

Amadeus Rail Hackathon Participants
Finally, at 4 pm it was time to showcase our project on stage. With our mics and hoodies, we really looked like a pop band! After delivering our presentation and listening to other teams, we finally relaxed and headed to the gala dinner where our team was declared the winner!
After properly celebrating, it was time for me to go back to the hotel and finally enjoy some sleep! I came back home exhausted but full of great memories and with two additional rewards. I received an Amazon Echo for winning the hackathon and even better, my baby started sleeping through the night while I was away!


If you would like to review the three ideas presented at the #HackExpress check the Slideshare infographic:


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