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Case Study: Galaxy Connect | The USS Midway Museum

Updated: August 1, 2019 | Share on LinkedIn

The USS Midway is the longest-serving American aircraft carrier of the 20th century.
It was opened as the USS Midway Museum in June 2004, dedicated to preserving
the memory of the people who served aboard the ship. The museum welcomes 1.4
million visitors annually, employs 200 paid staff plus 800 volunteers, and is currently
the #5 Museum in America according to TripAdvisor. They have used Gateway
Ticketing Systems’ Galaxy® ticketing and admission control solutions since 2008.

The USS Midway Museum was using a competitor offering to sell tickets through online travel agencies (OTAs). But their staff was spending hours reconciling vouchers every month because each distributor had different requirements. They also had no clear insight into the number of vouchers sold. So when a voucher was not redeemed, the distributor kept the profit.

Additionally, the few cases of voucher fraud were difficult to prevent and initiated
large customer service issues as guests could potentially use a single voucher
without a barcode multiple times to redeem multiple tickets.

“We really wanted to connect to the wholesalers directly”, says Cheryl Bailey, the
System Administrator at the Midway, “But the wholesalers either weren’t capable or
weren’t willing to build a custom API. We considered building these APIs in-house,
but we didn’t have the right technical knowledge or resources.”

The USS Midway Museum worked with Gateway’s Team to transition to our Galaxy
Connect Platform. The platform connects suppliers to third-party
distributors with just a single integration so they can issue live tickets and eliminate
paper vouchers. Since Connect already had a growing list of distributor agreements,
the Midway gained access to many of the OTAs they were already using, but this time
through just one API.

“Connect has saved us 40-50 hours a month in reconciling vouchers, and we saw
about a 20% bump in sales with our largest distributors when we started using the
platform”, says Joe Wagstaff, Sales Manager with the Midway.

The customer experience and guest satisfaction has improved as visitors now have
their tickets before they arrive. They don’t have to wait in line and can go right to
security. Lines at the gate have cut in half giving the ticket staff more time to offer
better customer service, and voucher fraud is now almost non-existent. Since there
is clear reporting into the number of tickets sold, contracts are being renegotiated so
the Midway profits when tickets sold through their partners aren’t used.

But ultimately, as Cheryl puts it, “it just makes more sense to have one API with
multiple people using it.” It’s simple to setup a new account since the API already
exists, and the support from Gateway provides the technical expertise the museum
doesn’t have. “Connect has so much potential and we’re excited to see what will roll
out in the future.”

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