SideStep Expands Partnership With Carlson Wagonlit

SideStep
, a leading online travel service, today announced a partnership with Carlson Wagonlit Travel
(Canada), a global leader in travel and expense management, in which the firm will make available SideStep`s award-winning travel search tool to its Canadian corporate customer base.


Carlson Wagonlit and SideStep began their relationship by deploying a customized version of SideStep at the CWT North American Call Center of a major corporate customer. Based on the success of this initial partnership, Carlson Wagonlit will now make SideStep available throughout Canada, empowering all of its corporate agents with SideStep`s unique travel search capabilities.


SideStep searches more than 130 different Web sites for Internet, GDS, and non-GDS faring options, seamlessly integrating Web inventory with that of independent consolidators and Global Distribution Systems. In addition, CWT has special access to the following vendor sites: WestJet, Intair Transit, Net Fares Online, Tango, CanJet, Jetsgo, Alio and Skylink. With the increasing complexity of the travel distribution landscape, the call has intensified among corporate travelers for a broader view of travel choices than is available through conventional systems. Together with SideStep, Carlson Wagonlit will provide its customers with a more comprehensive set of travel options, while saving time and upholding the managed travel process.


SideStep is now one of the most popular online travel resources in the workplace. SideStep`s alliance with Carlson Wagonlit Travel, a firm with a rich knowledge of the corporate travel sector, is designed to further this success in the corporate arena. The CWT network has more than 3,000 locations in 140 countries, giving the company the largest global reach of any corporate or leisure travel agency. With clients that include General Electric, IBM, Compaq, Nortel Networks and British Petroleum, the firm generates more than $11 billion in annual sales.


“SideStep has proven to be tremendously effective in our drive to help clients get the most from their travel budgets,” said Jane Greene, President, Carlson Wagonlit Travel Canada. “Carlson Wagonlit Travel Canada is proud to be the first travel management company in Canada to offer our Canadian corporate clients web search capabilities. With SideStep, our agents can see the best choices available from numerous sources of inventory with a single search and exceed customers` demands for research on lowest fares in the domestic and transborder markets. With this expansion of our partnership, we`re looking forward to bringing the savings and productivity benefits of SideStep to our corporate customer base,” concluded Greene.

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SideStep offers a rich selection of flights including the largest selection of “Web-only” fares available online. The award-winning service features more than 585 airlines worldwide in its comprehensive offering. SideStep is the only online travel service that can dynamically translate search results from an array of inventory sources into a user`s currency of choice, making it easier for people around the globe to comparison shop for travel. Once CWT agents make their selections, SideStep will transfer them directly to partner sites to book arrangements for their clients, taking them within a few clicks of purchase from brands they trust.


“With corporations under intense pressure to get the most for their money, the need for a product that can provide them with a unified view of the best available travel options has never been greater,” noted Brian Barth
, SideStep`s CEO. “Through our alliance with Carlson Wagonlit Canada, SideStep can meet this need - today - with a proven, successful offering.”


Related stories on ITN:

(12/12/2002) New Partnership for Sidestep.

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