1. Who is the provider?


ForwardKeys receives a daily feed with searches performed through Skyscanner, a travel metasearch engine and fare aggregator website. For the sake of clarity, a metasearch engine is a type of search engine that collects the results from other search engine databases. The Skyscanner site is available in over 30 languages and is used by 60 million people each month. It concatenates results from online travel agencies (OTAs) and airline websites, including low-cost carriers, and it returns a more comprehensive output to the client. Consequently, clients can take better decisions according to their preferences.

2. What is a “search”?

Before booking a flight, travellers search to find the best offers for themselves in regards to itinerary, timings and fare.

When a user does a “search” on Skyscanner, they add in the origin and the destination  (ie: city, country); the travel dates and the number of pax per booking. When the search is run, all the different possible options will be displayed on the screen from the city of origin to the destination for the selected dates.

Therefore a “search” contains the details regarding the city of origin, destination, travel dates and number of passengers the traveller has provided in the search parameters. This reveals the “willingness to travel” and the true intention of the traveller regardless of any service limitation (ie: not the availability of direct connections).

3. What is a “pick”?

Among all the different options displayed on Skyscanner after performing a search, the user may select one of the options available to get from the origin to the destination for the selected dates. When the user selects a specific travel agency or airline to proceed further with the purchase of the flight ticket, and the user is redirected to the third party’s website, this is what is considered a “pick”.

Therefore, on top of the details of origin, destination, travel dates and number of passengers, a “pick” also contains the details about airline and fares,  from the offer actually chosen by the traveller.

In the best possible scenario, each search should lead to a “Pick” but in reality, the number of searches far exceeds the number of Flight Picks due to several reasons such as a lack of non-stop routes, expensive fares and/or inappropriate departure/arrival times, etc.

In addition, a “pick” does not necessarily translated into a “booking”. The transaction may not be “finalised” on the after steps. However, when the user selects a “pick”, they have moved to a further step in the decision-making process of purchasing an air ticket,  from the “willingness to travel”, which we can assess with the “search”, to a more firm”intention to travel”. Therefore the ratio between picks and bookings is much higher than searches and final bookings.

4. Which kind of data is provided?

Up until July 2020, ForwardKeys received sample data. Now, we have full access to the entire Skyscanner database with historical data going back to 2017.

5. How often is the data updated?

ForwardKeys receives data from Skyscanner on a daily basis. Normally there is a 1-day delay for the data to be refreshed and in some cases, it can take up to 2 days.

There is an automated process to update the data in PROD early in the morning, around 7 am to refresh the data, and if by any reason it´s not updated, the automatic process is repeated again around 2 pm until it´s completed.

6. What is the coverage of Skyscanner compared to the entire search worldwide?

Attached is the Skyscanner coverage analysis per country. To create this report we have used Google Trends to analyse how Skyscanner is searched in Google against Kayak, Google Flights and Momodo – who are considered their main competitors. We did not consider OTAs in this analysis. Please take into account that in some countries, such as China, it is not representative since they have other competing search engines.


7. How many pax does a “search” account for?

When a person searches a trip with 4 pax, it is then counted as 4 searches, not 1.

 8. What does “picks” account for?

It’s the same as with searches. If the user selects a flight for a search for 4 pax, it’s counted as 4 picks. The number of picks is counted by the number of pax, not by the Skyscanner user nor session.

9. Is Flight Search data accessible via API?

No, Flight Search ‘raw’ data cannot be delivered via API or any other alternative method (ie: AWS) due to contractual specifications with our provider. You are able to download the data by using the Export options on the bottom left-hand side,

10. How did Skyscanner recognize searchers’ pax residence area?

Pax residence area is recognized by the Internet IP address of the Skyscanner user. If the searchers are on their mobile data plan, no pax residence area is recognized.

11. Does Skyscanner report on the breakdown of the app vs desktop vs browser?

es, they do but we do not display this segmentation. The segmentation available are Mobile / Desktop / API.

12. Does Skyscanner report back using Longitude / Latitude or town level?

They do not report coordinates, ForwardKeys matches the town names with their coordinates on our side, it’s one of the hardest of parts of the Skyscanner implementation.


If you have any doubts and questions,

please do not hesitate to contact your support analyst, or at: