Following the announcement that Orbitz is to charge a fee for buying tickets through their site, online competitor Sidestep have said they will not be following suit.
Phil Carpenter, VP Marketing of Sidestep said, “We have no plans to stick the consumer with any additional charges. We are well compensated by our partners for the tickets that we sell. What`s more, in addition to working directly with the airlines themselves, as Orbitz does, we also work with consolidators and other partners who offer us the opportunity to make higher margins than they can. And our cost structure is much lower than that of Orbitz. We don`t, for example, spend $25 million a year on marketing.”
Mr Carpenter added, “We believe that, like SideStep, Travelocity and Expedia will not follow Orbitz`s lead here. This move should impact the ability of Orbitz to compete successfully for consumers` business, and we`re looking forward to the opportunity to pull additional market share from them in the weeks to come.”