Etihad steps up Worldspan participation

Etihad Airways has increased its participation in the Worldspan global distribution system (GDS) to take advantage of Worldspan Direct Sell technology. Direct Sell gives Worldspan-connected travel buyers a real-time connection to Etihad Airways’ internal reservations system for up-to-the-minute shopping and booking. As part of its technology services upgrade, the airline also adopted Worldspan electronic ticketing capabilities, providing travel buyers the speed and convenience of issuing e-tickets on Etihad flights via Worldspan.

“These advancements will streamline transactions between Etihad Airways and Worldspan retailers, generating higher productivity and lower operational costs for our customers, and superior service to travellers,” said Kevin Ficco, vice president - Airline Distribution and Business Development for Worldspan. “We are pleased to partner with Etihad in delivering more powerful functionality to travel buyers worldwide.”

“Etihad understands how important it is to keep up-to-date with industry trends and ticketing activity and our increased participation level in Worldspan Direct Sell will give our Worldspan-connected travel agents a real-time connection to Etihad Airways’ inventories and booking. This will also help us to enable electronic ticketing facilities as part of our strategic initiative in line with IATA directives,” said Ali Saleh Al Bloushi, Head of Revenue Management at Etihad Airways.

At its core, Etihad Airways continues to seek new ways to expand its services and provide innovative benefits for its Guests. Implementation of electronic ticketing follows the recent launch of the carrier’s pioneering Etihad Guest program, a loyalty scheme which challenges the traditional airline approach and instead responds to customer demand by offering its members flexibility of choice, transparency and convenience.

Travel agencies, corporations and Web sites that subscribe to the Worldspan GDS access Etihad Airways’ flights and fares in an interactive shopping and booking environment through Direct Sell. Having a real-time connection to the airline’s internal reservations system ensures travel buyers receive last-seat availability, current pricing and rules, seat maps, instant bookings and confirmations, and e-ticketing for Etihad Airways flights. Etihad Airways joins a growing number of airlines using Worldspan’s cost-effective solutions to automate travel document processing, including reservations with connecting flights between airlines with interline e-ticketing (IET) agreements.