Air Europa cuts PCI audit costs by tens of thousands with PCI Proxy

Customer Stories
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December 1, 2023
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4 min read

About Air Europa

Air Europa is one of Spain’s most prominent airlines, with its main central hub at Madrid-Barajas Airport. The company's fleet of 48 aircraft is one of the most modern and sustainable in the industry, and flies to more than 55 destinations, connecting Europe and America. As well as flights, Air Europa has connections with online travel agencies and other travel providers to offer its customers a range of other services such as hire cars, hotels and travel insurance.

The challenge

Air Europa’s business and customer base has grown in the aftermath of the Covid pandemic, with customer numbers in the second half of 2022 surpassing those in H2 2019. The number of transactions processed has increased 5% from the pre-pandemic highs, and the range of incoming and outgoing channels through which customer payment data is collected and used has also grown. Air Europa was looking to upgrade its legacy payment gateway systems to support its continued efforts to provide a best-in-class customer experience.

The decision was made to stop storing customers’ payment data in-house, as there was no added value, and the risk of a data breach was immense. The team started looking at a range of providers that would allow them to keep their customers’ payment data stored securely off their servers, improve the flexibility of their payment flows, and prevent them from becoming locked into one payment provider. Above all, they needed to achieve these things without compromising customer experience.

PCI Proxy’s solution

Following our simple onboarding process, Air Europa quickly familiarized itself with the PCI Proxy dashboard and completed the integration for its LATAM market. All incoming payment data was tokenized and routed through PCI Proxy to prevent sensitive payment data from touching Air Europa’s servers.

By integrating with PCI Proxy, Air Europa could reduce its PCI DSS scope from SAQ-D to SAQ-A requirements. This reduced the cost of the company’s PCI audit by tens of thousands each year, and significantly reduced the time and hassle of the process. The airline can now focus on what it does best: delighting its customers.

When asked what the outsourcing of sensitive payment card data means for Air Europa, Yago Casasnovas, Head of Payments, Fraud Prevention and Distribution, replied:

“It means less PCI Scope, less PCI related costs, almost zero risk of suffering a cyber-attack.”

What’s next?

PCI Proxy has helped Air Europa reduce its PCI scope to SAQ-A in several channels. Going forward, PCI Proxy will help with the challenges of the travel industry’s specific payment flows where travel agencies (OTAs) or other partners (tour operators) connect and send card data to Air Europa. Using unique filter APIs, PCI Proxy can collect and tokenize payment data from any source to simplify PCI compliance and improve the flexibility of payment flows without compromising customer experience.

Head of PCI Proxy, Sascha Huwyler, said about the relationship:

"Air Europa offers a high level of excellence to its passengers and is regularly ranked among the most punctual airlines in Europe. We are proud to help them deliver an excellent customer experience during every part of the journey, from booking to check-out."

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Iola Hopkinson
Marketing Manager

Iola brings 5+ years' experience in financial communications and fintech marketing to the PCI Proxy team.

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