As announced earlier, as of January 1, 2003, SAS will introduce a new distribution system in Scandinavia. The SAS Group will then apply net prices and reduce all prices that previously included commission amounts. At the same time, the SAS Group and travel agencies will charge customers for their services to customers, a procedure that most travel agencies in Scandinavia already apply today.
This means that the price of a ticket will vary depending on the customer’s choice of sales channel and service level. At SAS it will be less expensive to book a ticket on the Internet than through telephone sales.
“The decision to establish the distribution strategy was made following an extensive discussions during the past 12 months with travel agencies and industry organizations. We have now concluded cooperation agreements with two of the largest travel agency chains in the Nordic region, Bennett BTI and American Express,” relates Senior Vice President S¿ren Jespersen, who is responsible for the SAS Group’s global sales. “We are currently in talks with other travel agencies and expect to conclude these negotiations in the near future.”
Ragnar Norbäck, General Manager Nordic & Netherlands American Express, comments: “Through this distribution concept, SAS takes the lead in Europe. This could initiate a development for the Nordic Market toward a pure and professional relationship between suppliers, customers and the travel agency. This gives us the possibility to serve our customers in the absolutely best way.”
Hans Holmen, President Bennett BTI Nordics comments: “In our opinion, it is positive that we have reached an agreement that results in a new distribution strategy for SAS. We believe that it is better for the market and the customer to clarify relationships on the market, such as who is responsible for each part of the relations with customers. Starting a cooperation with SAS already at this time is the best solution for SAS, for us and particularly for our customers in 2003.”
Our intention is that SAS’s new distribution model creates distinct and transparent customer relations and a distinct role distribution between the travel agency and the airline. This is advantageous for the customer,” says S¿ren Jespersen.