Move provides three year commitment from airline to Sabre GDS, reduces BA distribution costs and automatically gives Sabre GDS users access to all BA fares.
Sabre Travel Network today said that British Airways has joined its Direct Connect Availability (DCA) Three-Year Option. This programme commits the carrier to a three-year term at the highest level of participation in the Sabre global distribution system (GDS) in exchange for a reduced booking fee, fixed for three years.
“This innovative programme helps us significantly lower our distribution costs, while ensuring that Sabre Connected travel agents automatically have access to the full range of British Airways fares,” said Dale Moss, director of sales worldwide at British Airways. “By making all our published fares available through the Sabre GDS we are making agents as competitive as any of our other sales and distribution channels.”
The move by British Airways, the first major European carrier to participate in the programme, brings to 24 the number of airlines participating in the DCA Three-Year Option, including all of the ‘Big Six’ US carriers.
When selling seats through the Sabre GDS, airlines select one of several levels of participation in the system. DCA is the highest level of Sabre GDS participation and provides airlines with the widest range of services to market and sell their products. The Three-Year Option was introduced for bookings made in the United States in October 2002, and was extended in April 2003 to include bookings made in Europe.
Airlines signing the DCA Three-Year Option agree to provide all Sabre users with all their published fares. This includes published fares that the airlines sell through any third-party Web site or their own Web sites and reservation offices. In return, Sabre Travel Network reduces its booking fee and fixes this rate for three years.
“The DCA Three-Year Option is a win-win-win for all parties,” said Richard Adams, Sabre Travel Network’s senior vice president for Europe, the Middle East and Africa. “British Airways significantly lowers its distribution costs, travel agencies are able to enhance their competitiveness and customer service, travellers gain wide access to key British Airways fares, including Web fares, through the channel of their choice and Sabre Travel Network gains a three year commitment from the airline.”