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View Web Reservation Site Configuration Overview

Category:New Users - Start Here!
Category:KnowledgeBase
Category:Web Reservation System

Hudson Web Reservation System - Site Overview

This article is designed to give the new user or client an overview of the various tabs and components of the Hudson Web Reservation System. It is not intended to teach you how to adjust, change or configure the site, but rather serve as a tour of the site configuration utility pages. Generally, no instructions on how to configure will be included here though if appropriate a quick suggestion or comment may appear. Where possible, links to other articles in the KnowledgeBase will be provided when additional information or instructions are already available.

NB:  To make some items easier to locate, they may appear in multiple places or under more than one tab: for example Test fare appears on

Favorites, Fares, and Utilities

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Favorites

The most commonly used links are provided here. Once a site is up and running, these are the items that most administrators will visit when they return to the site.

View web reservation records

A form of reporting tool, you can generate screen views to see the overview or details of all reservations made online. The tool allows you to specify and display all reservations by the date made, the pickup or dropoff date, a single reservation if the ID is known, the passenger name, the Frequent Rider number or GroupID.

Group configuration

Group Profiles may be manually entered here, if there is no HGTS “local” system.  If there is a local system, and a group profile is created there and the Export / No Export option is set to “Export”, and the profile has been exported and uploaded to the web, then this is where you will find it.  This section is particularly useful when building custom web “portals” online. You will locate the Group Profile and them adjust the contents of the various “tabs” to change interface and rules that apply to this particular group.  More details on how to build portals may be found in this article: Portal Construction Tools

Upload and Import a CSV flle

This utility is one of the most often used. When you have fare files, airline files, or other “Comma Separated Value” formatted files to upload to the web site, this is the interface you will come to.  When uploading files, you need to be accessing this web reservation site from a computer / network where you have the saved CSV files. 

Token Configuration

Upon initial inspection, this list of Tokens can be a bit overwhelming. This list however controls a very large majority of the text content that makes up your web reservation site. This is where you will come to locate existing Tokens and text and make adjustments. You also have the ability here to crate new Custom Tokens, that will again be useful in controlling content on customized web reservation portals for your corporate accounts.  For a list of many commonly used Tokens on the web (and local systems) please look at the section Category:Tokens.

Test Fare

A very useful tool that shows the breakdown of all the fare components in a fare calculation. This can be used after importing a new fare table to determine why a fare, charge, tax or pickup time is not being calculated properly.  This tool good for evaluating Arrival and Departure reservations, including reservations with specific group profiles (and discounts). Does not currently support Point to Point fare testing.

Trace Configuration

Primarily a tool for Tech Support staff and developers, this tool allows you to see web site “system logs” that documents the behind the scenes activity and communication results.  Several different log traces may be enabled, viewed, and even downloaded.

Configuration

Address verification /list services

The Hudson systems have the ability to do Address Verification Lookup (subscription to 3rd party service required) which verifies in real-time that a pickup / drop-off address has been entered correctly and is a true and valid address. This eliminates the possibility of mistyped addresses and addresses that do not actually exist in the travel city. This page is where the link to this external service is configured.

Airline configuration

When setting up a web reservation site for Airport Reservations, this page allows you to see what Airlines have been uploaded and imported (See Upload and import a CSV file) to the system. There will be a separate and distinct list of airlines for each configured Airport (see next item below). Generally airlines are uploaded rather than entered here manually, but this tool does allow for adjustments if required.

Airport configuration

This section allows for the setting of the Airports to be displayed on your site. In addition to standard mainstream airports (BOS, JFK, LAX, LHR, CDG, etc.) non-standard airports may also appear here. For example, if the site will allow for hourly or Point to Point reservations, a “ptp” airport may appear here. If the site supports cruise ship ports or Train terminals, airport codes of xx1, xx2, etc. may appear as well.

Alternate site configuration

When Hudson clients have multiple web reservation sites (for example: foreign language sites), rather than setting up Services, profiles and fare rules on several sites, it is possible to have the additonal sites “pull” or read these values from the primary or source site.  This is the place, on a secondary or tertiary site where you would configure where the fare and service information should be read from.

Barcode configuration

For clients that produce web tickets or boarding passes as part of their email confirmation process, it is possible to add a barcode or QR code to the ticket.  This allows drivers and airport booth staff to quickly scan a clients web ticket with a hand held or mobile scanner and check them in to the Hudson system when they board a vehicle. This process also then marks the redeemed ticket as “used” and would not permit the same ticket to be scanned again or used by another person on the same of different vehicle.

Credit card gateway configuration

The Hudson systems support multiple credit card processors. If you have a special processor for coaches, but a different processor for sedans and shuttles, this is the place where those processors are setup and configured. This configuration will typically be done for you by Hudson Tech Support or Deployment staff.  You should not adjust the information in this area unless specifically advised to do so by Hudson or your Credit Card Processor. Once the various processors are configured here, they become selectable, as an option, when setting up and configuring each of your vehicle types (Services) outlined further down this article.

Currency conversion

For clients who wish to upload their fares in a default native currency (eg: USD) but then have fare values on the site appear in a different currency (eg: EUR), this is where you can configure the conversion factor or conversion rate.  If configured here, uploaded fares are adjusted according to this conversion rate before being displayed on the pages where fares appear during the reservation process.  This may be a page you return to occasionally to adjust the conversion factor as market currency conversion rates fluctuate.

Driver configuration

Not used often, this is a place where a list of uploaded driver names, id’s and passwords may be found. Some clients allow drivers to login to a specially configured page of the Web Reservation system (Info View) which then would allow them to view work that has been assigned to them by dispatchers. Though names may be entered here, typically they are uploaded and imported as a csv file.

Frequent rider programs

Clients can add and configure multiple customer loyalty programs here, or in the HGTS “local” system. These programs award loyal customers “points” or credits based on the type of travel they are reserving. Once a sufficient number of points have been accrued, they may be redeemed for discounts or complimentary travel on future reservations.

General configuration

Many important core configuration items are defined here and are broken into sub categories: General, Directional Options, Time, Cut off, Hourly, Taxes, Credit Card, Passenger Count and Airport Types. Examples of things configured here are the primary language type for the site, the time zone, default airport and service area, where reservations should be directed and stored, where fares should be read from (if another site), flight type surcharges, AM/PM or 24 hour time format, tax rates, type of credit cards accepted, etc. Most of these items will be configured by Hudson Support or Deployment staff and usually do not require adjustments of changes.

Group configuration

Group Profiles may be manually entered here, if there is no HGTS “local” system.  If there is a local system, and a group profile is created there and the Export / No Export option is set to “Export”, and the profile has been exported and uploaded to the web, then this is where you will find it.  This section is particularly useful when building custom web “portals” online. You will locate the Group Profile and them adjust the contents of the various “tabs” to change interface and rules that apply to this particular group.  More details on how to build portals may be found in this article: Portal Construction Tools

Payment type configuration

At the time of this writing, there are 3 configurable Payment Methods that may be used on the we site: Cash, Credit Card and Direct Bill (Frequent Rider points are a 4th but configured elsewhere). This tool allows you to change the names of these 3 types to suit your particular business needs. If a surcharge or discount is to be assessed when a client uses a specific form of payment, these amounts are configured here as well.

Pickup extras configuration

Pickup Extras are typically setup as items or options that can appear for travelers when they are arriving at an airport. These options may include things like:  Gate Greet,  Meet at Baggage Claim, Meet with Sign, etc.  THe web system allows for the configuration of 4 such Pickup Extras along with “Message Strings” that present special instructions or other text to the client that further explains and defines the option. 

Reservation Verify / Print

When clients are presented with the option to verify a reservation online and to print a confirmation, receipt or web ticket / voucher, this tools helps define where the information to be displayed or the template to be printed is derived.  In the case of confirmation and receipt templates, these may reside in the HGTS “local” system or they may reside on the web.

Remote host configuration

In its original days, the web reservation system was autonomous and all reservations made on the web remained there as well, within an online database. For clients that are using Hudson’s web reservation system ONLY, this is still true.  For most other clients, reservations made online are downloaded automatically into their HGTS “local” system.  When a client or company logs into the web reservation system, the web “calls down” to the local system to retrieve information and configuration rules that are specific to that client.  The Remote Host Configuration is where Hudson technicians tell the web system the IP Address, and Port to connect to in order to locate and retrieve this information. Rather than maintain a constant link to the local system, the web site contacts the other system and database only when there is a reason to do so.  If the link or connections fails to respond, an email alert is sent to Hudson support, or other email address(es) as configured on this screen.

Service extras configuration

Service extras are optional services and items that clients may select or purchase when they are making a reservation. Common examples include Car Seat, Kennel, Handicap or ADA services, traveling with skis, bicycles, golf clubs, the desire to have bottled water or newspaper in the vehicle, etc. Each of these items that is offered by the transportation provider may be configured here, along with the type of charge or fee (if any) that should be added when the item(s) is selected.

Time record configuration

Many things happen on a schedule in the transportation industry. The scheduled times that something occurs, are added to the system via Time Records.  The time record can specify the day(s) of the week, the time of day and if appropriate, a scheduled line run number. Most often, time records are uploaded and exported semi-automatically from the HGTS “local” system.  If no local system is in place, these time records may be uploaded in CSV format (see Upload and Import CSV file) or they may be entered manually in the tool provided.

User password

Reservation cutoff configuration

This tool allows you to set the default time restrictions that will control how much lead time is required to record a new reservation, edit or cancel and existing reservation. It is also possible here, through the use of match keys, to create unique and custom cutoff time rules.  For example, if you service 2 different airports, but are physically closer to one of them, you may allow a shorter notice on reservations to and from that airport while requiring more advanced notice for new reservations for the more distant airport.

Remote database configuration

In its original days, the web reservation system was autonomous and all reservations made on the web remained there as well, within an online database. For clients that are using Hudson’s web reservation system ONLY, this is still true.  For most other clients, reservations made online are downloaded automatically into their HGTS “local” system.  When a client or company logs into the web reservation system, the web “calls down” to the local system to retrieve information and configuration rules that are specific to that client.  The Remote Database Configuration is where Hudson technicians tell the web system the IP Address, and Port to connect to in order to locate and retrieve this information. Rather than maintain a constant link to the local system, the web site contacts the other system and database only when there is a reason to do so. 

Remote access configuration

This configuration is a list of privileged servers which are allowed access to certain services such as setting user passwords.

Custom

Custom configuration

Many important field labels are defined here. This will include how you display schools, airports, offices, city/town and passenger types (Adults, Children, Senior, Military, Student, etc.).  This is also where you enter important information about your company that will then filter down and be inserted into confirmations and other templates. This information includes things linke your company name, website URL, email address, reservation and sales phone numbers.

Custom configuration (2)

A continuation of the section above, this page has just a few additional important items including where you specify the company logo that is to be displayed on the welcome page to your web reservation site.

Custom configuration for PUD Alternate Location

You can change the way that PickUp Default (PUD) locations are displayed on the web reservation system by configuring some of the fields located here. In addition to adding text to the fields on this page, you also need to enable the feature in General Configuration > Enable PUD alternate location drop-list.  When enabled, the way in which locations are displayed and selected changes. If enabled, it is also necessary to upload and import a list of names, contained in a csv file, to the altpud.db.

Custom configuration for flight details

Labels for some of the flight fields contained on the reservation pages are defined here. Examples include: Arrival Flight Number, Departure Flight Nunber, City arriving from, Destination city and others.  In addition to defining the labels, you can also determine which of the reservation pages they will appear on (PickupInfo Page, AddressInfo Page, Both, None). By entering Error Message text into the “Error” field, you are then making this a required piece of information during the booking process.

Custom configuration for pickup info

There are several sections on the Pickup Info page of the web reservation process. This area of the web configuration utility allows you to change and adjust the section header titles or labels. Generally, removing one of the labels will also result in that section being hidden from view and removed from the page. Note: The labels may be adjusted according to the direction of travel.

Custom configuration for special instructions

There are 2 custom fields that may be added to the Make the Pickup Reservation page. For both,there are 3 fields:  Description (label that appears on the page), Prefix ( -  ), Error Message (text string that appears if the field is not completed by client. By entering Error message text, this field becomes required).

Site colors & font

It is possible to configure the default text and background colors of various pages and sections of the web reservation site here. You can also adjust the “mouse over color” which changes the color of the background to something other than the default - aids the user in knowing when a selectable option is highlighted as the mouse passes over it.  A general background color, default font type, size and color may be configured.  See the links to various help screens from this page for assistance in defining hex color codes.

Token configuration

Upon initial inspection, this list of Tokens can be a bit overwhelming. This list however controls a very large majority of the text content that makes up your web reservation site. This is where you will come to locate existing Tokens and text and make adjustments. You also have the ability here to crate new Custom Tokens, that will again be useful in controlling content on customized web reservation portals for your corporate accounts.  For a list of many commonly used Tokens on the web (and local systems) please look at the section Category:Tokens.

Custom configuration (Restricted)

Accessible to Hudson TechSupport and Deployment staff only, this is the area where Web Reservation Prefix is defined.  User login and validation source is also defined here and may be set to local web database, remote user database, etc.

Email

Email recipient configuration

This page allows you to view and configure how emails are generated from the site and to whom they will be sent. For example, when a new reservation is entered online it may be desirable to generate a confirmation email to both the client and a central reservations monitoring address. Generally, to see what the current (default) setup is in place, select the “Summary Display” button on this page.  Change the “List Type” on the right side of the page and then press the Summary Display button again to see how and where various email templates are being sent.

Email template files

This is where actual email template files are created and or managed.  Several default templates are loaded with a new site.  It is possible to add text as well as html templates here.  Most all templates will make significant use of Tokens, mentioned elsewhere.

Match key template configuration

You will be able to define under which conditions the various email template files (configured above) will be generated. For example, you may have a different email confirmation for different airports, different service types, or different directions (arrival / departure / point to point).  You can use MatchKeys (filtering criteria) on this page to determine the appropriate template to use in each scenario.

Send email confirmation

If you know the web reservation ID for any web reservation, you may access this page, enter the ID into the field provided and then click the button to send a confirmation to the address of record.  The address entered on the original reservation will be the one used, you cannot adjust or change the address.

Email subscriptions

Errors

Error configuration

The text to be displayed (typically in large red font) at the top of the web reservation site pages when various errors occur in the reservation process.  The messages can be configured to direct clients to call your office for assistance, or they may be instructional in nature indicating that a condition of their travel has resulted in not being able to book for the selected date / time / service, etc.

Error configuration (2)

A continuation of the error messages outlined above. This page also includes error messages that can appear when Credit Card errors occur, including invalid credit card type, number of entered digits, expiration date, etc.

Token configuration

Upon initial inspection, this list of Tokens can be a bit overwhelming. This list however controls a very large majority of the text content that makes up your web reservation site. This is where you will come to locate existing Tokens and text and make adjustments. You also have the ability here to crate new Custom Tokens, that will again be useful in controlling content on customized web reservation portals for your corporate accounts.  For a list of many commonly used Tokens on the web (and local systems) please look at the section Category:Tokens.

External

Most of the items in this section are advanced settings and typically are managed by Hudson Deployment and Tech Support Engineers. Please consult with Hudson before changing settings on these sections of the configuration.

External reservation interface configuration

When the Hudson web reservation system interfaces with other XML reservation sources, much of the setup and configuration is completed here. Examples of external XML reservation interfaces include BostonCoach Affiliate setup, ExpressionEngine Website integration, etc.

Web services configuration

As with the External reservation interface configuration above, this section has some additional settings when Web Services are used to share configuration settings with other systems / sites.

Info view

If enabled, Infoview and Client Center settings are added and adjusted here.

Info view configuration

If enabled, Infoview and Client Center settings are added and adjusted here.

Device configuration

This section is for use by clients who are using Mobile Data Terminals, GPS and other devices in their vehicles. Clicking this link will open a login screen for Device Configuration.  The ability to login to this section must be enabled in the Local System, User Privileges section.

Voice QuickRez configuration

This section is for use by clients who are integrated with a 3rd party Voice Recognition service such as Voxeo. Voice Recognition services allow callers to interact with the Hudson Web interface and make their web reservations by telephone. This is an advanced service and requires additional configuration, setup and 3rd party integration. An example of the Voice QuickRez system: Hotel Concierge who calls a special phone number, enters a unique code and then speaks a reservation to the web.

Fares

Alternate fare rules configuration

Alternate Fare Rules are those rules that apply to passenger types other than normal full-fare passengers. Examples include children, teens, military, seniors, students, etc.  A separate set of alternate fare rules may be defined for different services and airports.  After being defined here, the rules then become available for selection in the Services configuration (outlined below).

Fare component configuration

The list of more than 25 different fare components are listed down the left margin of the page. A series of columns, along with Yes / No drop list options are provided, allowing the client to better define how fares, charges and discounts are calculated on the web.  These settings are usually configured by Hudson Support and Deployment staff and are not often adjusted further once the site is up and running.  Changing these settings can change the way fares are calculated and displayed on the site.

Maintain fares

The Maintain Fares section allows users to view the results of uploading fare.csv files. While it is possible to manually adjust and edit fares on these pages, it is not generally recommended.  This section is also used to add textual descriptions for uploaded locations that are in use on a Tours and Attractions website.

Pickup extras configuration

Pickup Extras W, S, S2, S3 are configured here, by adding a value to the “Description” field.  Specific messages to be displayed once those items are selected during the reservation process are also configured here in the Message String 1 and Message String 2 fields.  Examples of common Pickup Extras include: Gate Greet, Meet at Baggage Claim, Meet with Sign, etc.

Sales Tax 2 configuration

This additional Sales Tax configuration location is used when tax(es) need to be configured and applied but only in specific situations, locations or scenarios.  The use of Match Keys allows very specific tax rules to be configured and applied to the reservation process.

Test fare

A very useful tool that shows the breakdown of all the fare components in a fare calculation. This can be used after importing a new fare table to determine why a fare, charge, tax or pickup time is not being calculated properly.  This tool good for evaluating Arrival and Departure reservations, including reservations with specific group profiles (and discounts). Does not currently support Point to Point fare testing.

Import

Upload and Import a CSV file

This utility is one of the most often used. When you have fare files, airline files, or other “Comma Separated Value” formatted files to upload to the web site, this is the interface you will come to.  When uploading files, you need to be accessing this web reservation site from a computer / network where you have the saved CSV files

Import / Export a CSV file

This utility is similar to the previous upload and import tool. In this case however you dont actually upload from another computer. You use this tool instead to reimport a csv file that was previously uploaded, and to which you already know the name.  It is also possible with this utility to EXPORT values from the database and generate a CSV file. For example, if your web site contains valid fare values but your original fare files have been lost or destroyed, you can Export from the database and create a new source CSV file. That file may then be downloaded to your local computer / network for storage or modification.

Profiles

Group configuration

Group Profiles may be manually entered here, if there is no HGTS “local” system.  If there is a local system, and a group profile is created there and the Export / No Export option is set to “Export”, and the profile has been exported and uploaded to the web, then this is where you will find it.  This section is particularly useful when building custom web “portals” online. You will locate the Group Profile and them adjust the contents of the various “tabs” to change interface and rules that apply to this particular group.  More details on how to build portals may be found in this article: Portal Construction Tools

Profile priority configuration

This section allows the site manager to determine whether profiles are created and stored on the web system database or whether profile details are stored in the local (non web) system and then read in real-time from that local system (newer functionality).

Profile strings on welcome page

Selecting this option will display a list of Tokens (mentioned earlier) that pertain to the Main welcome Page of the Web reservation site. Several of these are profile specific, including but not limited to: PROFILE_EDIT, PROFILE_GROUPID, PROFILE_USERID, etc.

Profile strings other

As with the preceding item, this link will open a list of Tokens, this time more focused on profile related items. These tokens control many of the captions and fields displayed on the web reservation system when a user selects the option to “create a frequent user id” on the web.

Frequent rider programs

Clients can add and configure multiple customer loyalty programs here, or in the HGTS “local” system. These programs award loyal customers “points” or credits based on the type of travel they are reserving. Once a sufficient number of points have been accrued, they may be redeemed for discounts or complimentary travel on future reservations.

Services

Services (1-3)

Each separate vehicle type offered for reservations online is define here as a “service.”  The way in which each service is displayed and the rules that are followed are configured here.  3 Services are displayed on a page. For links to additional service configuration pages, scroll to the bottom of the page and select the appropriate service link.

Utilities

View web reservation records

A form of reporting tool, you can generate screen views to see the overview or details of all reservations made online. The tool allows you to specify and display all reservations by the date made, the pickup or dropoff date, a single reservation if the ID is known, the passenger name, the Frequent Rider number or GroupID.

Upload file

Different from the Upload and Import link already presented, this link is useful when uploading items other than csv files, though it can be used for uploading csv files also.  Graphics which may appear on a portal or on the main site may be uploaded to the Images folder.  Other files such as Grid Definition Files (gdf’s) and templates can be uploaded with this utility as well.

Download file

When information exists on the web reservation site, and you wish to download it to your computer for editing and revision, this tool may be used. Generally, you must already know the name of the file or item to be downloaded as no “browsing” or search interface is provided.

User tracking statistics

This link will allow you to view some basis site statistics. It will display for each record, the date, the number of locations viewed, the number of services displayed and then the service selected and whether the reservations were actually completed (booked).

Test fare

A very useful tool that shows the breakdown of all the fare components in a fare calculation. This can be used after importing a new fare table to determine why a fare, charge, tax or pickup time is not being calculated properly.  This tool good for evaluating Arrival and Departure reservations, including reservations with specific group profiles (and discounts). Does not currently support Point to Point fare testing.

Import source encoding

This configuration section sets the character set encoding type for imported fare csv files. The input file is automatically converted from the specified encoding type to UTF-8.  This encoding type is only necessary when importing a fare csv file that contains international characters / letters.  This setting is currently on used when importin fares.

Device Messaging Configuration

An XMPP Server, username and password may be added and defined here when the website interfaces with an XMPP (chat or messaging) server or service.

Supervisory functions

Designed for Deployment or Support staff, this interface allows the user to generate a csv file from the existing fares in the database or to re-import a csv file previously uploaded and stored in the sites Data folder. Links to View the source DB file and to Compact the DB file are also presented.

Trace configuration

Primarily a tool for Tech Support staff and developers, this tool allows you to see web site “system logs” that documents the behind the scenes activity and communication results.  Several different log traces may be enabled, viewed, and even downloaded.

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