Eurostar and Amadeus will jointly showcase a demonstration version of the Eurostar GDS Gateway at the Business Travel Show, Earl’s Court, on 13-15 February.
The project, which will see Eurostar on the airline screens of all of the major GDSs in the UK for the first time, is on course for completion this year. Travel Management Companies in the UK will be able to access the Eurostar inventory directly from the GDS and book Eurostar as they would an airline, thus offering combination with other content such as hotels, insurance and car rental.
Eurostar is working with Amadeus to develop the Eurostar GDS Gateway. Amadeus will be the IT provider of the gateway, facilitating content between Eurostar and users such as agencies, corporations and individuals, either through Amadeus or through other GDSs. Prior to its launch, the new system will be tested across all of the GDSs and will include Carlson Wagonlit Travel, Expedia Corporate Travel and Hillgate Travel as preferred supplier partners.
The roll out of the new system will make Eurostar more accessible to business travellers. Last year (2006), Eurostar saw a 17% increase in the number of business travellers using its high speed services. From 14 November this year, business and leisure travellers will enjoyer quicker journeys when Eurostar launches services from its new central London station: St Pancras International.
Jason Geall, Head of UK Sales, Eurostar, said: “Eurostar’s arrival on primary screen GDS will make it much easier for agents to make Eurostar-air price comparisons on London-Paris and London-Brussels journeys and to book Eurostar tickets.”
Stephane Durand, Managing Director, Amadeus UK & Ireland, said: “Travel Management Companies and corporate travellers are always on the lookout for fast, efficient access to the widest range of travel content. Amadeus’ latest IT development will see Eurostar high speed rail availability shown on the same display as airlines, allowing for easy comparison between air and rail alternatives. Additional benefits such as e-ticketing and instant booking confirmation together with access to graphical seat-map displays will boost productivity and enhance customer service for TMCs and their rail travelling customers.”