Following the launch of Etihad Airways first flight to New York, the national airline of the UAE has now made Guest travel to the US even simpler thanks to the activation of interline e-ticketing with Continental Airlines. Continental is the world’s fifth largest airline, serving 292 airports, and the agreement will offer Guests’ seamless travel to and beyond New York to key destinations including Chicago, Houston and Los Angeles.
Furthermore, those whose journey combines flights with Continental Airlines and Etihad Airways will also be able to benefit from an electronic ticket covering all their flight segments.
The facility, which also allows Continental offices and agents to issue Etihad e-tickets, will then be extended in November for travel agents in the USA and Canada.
This alliance signals the next step in Etihad’s fast roll out of e-ticketing across its international network as well as its aim of establishing interline e-ticketing in association with other strategic carriers.
‘The inauguration of our commercial e-ticketing operation on July 28 enabled Etihad to achieve the 100 percent levels required to meet the International Air Transport Association (IATA) Operational Safety Audit (IOSA), of which we are extremely proud,’ said Geert W. Boven, VP Commercial, Etihad Airways.
‘Looking ahead, by the end of November more than 80 percent of Etihad’s network will be available for e-ticketing, through both agents and direct sales, with a goal of 95 percent set for the end of the year.’
To ensure the e-ticketing system’s operational success, trials were successfully conducted on selected international routes earlier in the year and Etihad personnel were fully instructed on its workings through a newly introduced virtual training technique.
Boven continued: ‘The aggressive implementation of our e-ticketing system has ensured that Etihad is comfortably on track to meet IATA’s deadline for all airlines to use e-ticketing only, as scheduled for the end of 2007, and has also gained praise from system provider Amadeus.’
‘More importantly still, the introduction of e-ticketing will bring an even greater range of benefits to our Guests in terms of security and convenience, regardless of how they book their travel with Etihad. From the ability to amend flight details up to 30 minutes before minimum check-in times to travel agents being able to handle last minute bookings, this development reflects Etihad’s strong service philosophy and commitment to providing innovative travel solutions for our Guests,’ Boven concluded.