NCLH embraces Amazon web services

2024-06-15T19:26:27+00:00 June 15th, 2024|Technology|

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings (NCLH) has migrated its shoreside technology infrastructure, including its reservation system, mobile apps, among others, to Amazon Web Services (AWS).

This move makes NCLH one of the first cruise lines to transition its core technology operations to AWS.

The company said that it is using AWS’ infrastructure to reduce average processing time, increase availability during peak periods, streamline its operational infrastructure, and enhance the overall cruising experience.

“We are thrilled to be at the forefront of cloud adoption in the cruise industry,” said Georgios Mortakis, NCLH CIO and Chief Information Security Officer (pictured).

“Our migration of on-premises workloads to AWS has resulted in significant improvements in performance. This allows us to accelerate innovation and create amazing experiences for our employees, guests, and travel partners.

“As an example, during our largest traffic event ever for our reservations systems in November, 2023, we handled record volumes without any known performance or availability issues,” he claimed.

The 15-month migration to AWS, led by Mortakis and Humberto Pombo, NCLH’s Senior Director of Infrastructure, involved moving over 100 applications, thousands of virtual and physical servers, data centre environments, and peripheral server rooms to the cloud.

NCLH worked with AWS, which offered guidance and operational best practices with automations, skills, and experience to move outdated legacy systems to a modernised tech stack, bolstering availability, performance, and faster application response times during wave seasons and high-demand promotional events.

The company added that it can now respond swiftly to market changes, customer expectations, and disruptions.

In addition, disaster recovery is now much more seamless through the use of multiple AWS Availability Zones and Regions for mission-critical applications. The company has also adopted development, security and operations, or DevSecOps, into its software development processes.

DevSecOps brings new tools and processes that makes security an integral part of the software development process. This framework facilitates secure coding practices, automates security testing procedures, and mitigates human errors that could potentially expose vulnerabilities.

NCLH’s journey to complete the AWS migration within a tight 15-month timeframe wasn’t without roadblocks and dependencies.

“Meticulous planning by the implementation team, leveraging cutting-edge technologies and innovative strategies to streamline the migration process, and an ‘all-hands-on-deck’ attitude were necessary”, Mortakis explained.

With its shore-side migration complete, NCLH said it was eager to harness the full potential of artificial intelligence (AI) to revolutionise its operations.

It plans to leverage a broad portfolio of AWS analytics, machine learning, and generative AI services to facilitate rapid prototyping of new features and services.

From tailoring on board activities and amenities to individual preferences to streamlining logistics and supply chain management, AI-driven insights will enable NCLH to elevate the cruise experience, the company claimed.

“By being an all-in cloud adopter, NCLH is a digital transformer ready to capitalise on the agility, scalability, and innovation the cloud unlocks” added Steven Elinson, Director, AWS’ Services Sector.

“We are excited to expand our collaboration with NCLH as it embarks on this next chapter of cloud-enabled innovation.”