Sabre Holdings Corporation (NYSE: TSG) today announced the most comprehensive wireless booking service available in North America. Sabre BTS(R) customers can now create, access and change flight, car and hotel reservations using Wireless Application Protocol (WAP) enabled mobile phones offered by Nokia, Sprint PCS or AT&T Wireless, or WAP-enabled personal digital assistants (PDAs). Sabre is also introducing wireless viewing capability to its Sabre(R) VirtuallyThere(TM) Web site customers. Sabre Connected SM travelers now have instant mobile access to travel itineraries, flight details, gate information and weather forecasts using the wireless device of their choice.
“Now, the 60 million travelers who book reservations in Sabre each year have the flexibility to retrieve their travel information—anytime, anywhere, via any device,” said Scott W. Smith, senior vice president and general manager of Sabre BTS. “Travelers from more than 500 companies subscribing to Sabre BTS are now also able to wirelessly book their trips. The days of waiting in line or on hold are gone, and so are the days of searching and paying for a data port.”
This easy-to-use service alleviates calling an airline to check flight times and gate locations, as well as calling a hotel or car rental company to confirm or change a reservation. Information is retrieved instantly, allowing travelers to avoid waiting in lines at airport service desks or on hold for customer service representatives.
Flexible technologies, including Wireless Markup Language (WML), eXtensible Markup Language (XML), Handheld Device Markup Language (HDML) and WAP, make this functionality possible, allowing a micro-browser on the wireless device to access and display pertinent travel information. Once the information is accessed, travelers can make changes by selecting from displayed options.
Sabre BTS customers can also use their wireless devices to create new air, car and hotel reservations. Additionally, travelers will receive proactive alerts concerning flight cancellations, delays and gate changes so they can be prepared prior to arriving at the airport or make other arrangements.
“The potential savings in transaction costs and increase in productivity and efficiency are substantial,” said Sue Nelson, corporate travel manager for Trilogy, a Sabre BTS corporate customer. “Sabre BTS wireless services allow travelers to quickly and easily obtain the answers they need without having to contact travel consultants—significantly reducing transaction costs, saving time and enabling travel consultants to lend their expertise toward solving more complex travel issues.”
Travel supplier reservation centers also gain substantially from Sabre’s wireless services. As travelers utilize the services in larger capacity, incoming calls and administration to address simple queries such as flight time and gate and hotel check-in time will be significantly reduced.
Sabre BTS and Sabre VirtuallyThere wireless services are also available in Europe and Asia via WAP-enabled Nokia phones or WAP-enabled PDAs.