According to WizCom International’s (“WizCom”) survey of electronic distribution in the tour/leisure travel industry, tour operators who have GDS connectivity are the most successful within the leisure travel market. The Tour Industry Electronic Distribution (T.I.E.D.) Survey conducted by Windward Marketing Group and sponsored by WizCom found that although most tour operators are not connected to the GDSs and the Internet, the majority believe that electronic connectivity will become increasingly important for success in the rapidly changing leisure travel marketplace.
The survey is based on quantitative and qualitative information from tour operators that represent more than 10 percent of the tour operator industry dollar volume. Only 23 percent of the tour operators surveyed currently use the GDSs. Of the tour operators who do not have GDS connectivity, 48 percent said that the main reason for not being connected was either concern about cost or lack of technical expertise. A large majority of Tour Operator’s surveyed - 79 percent - feel that GDS connectivity is important to success in today’s leisure travel marketplace.

“While the report showed that 23 percent of tour operators surveyed had GDS connectivity, in actuality the true figure is probably much lower,” said Vic Macchio, President of Windward Marketing Group.

“The small number of tour operators who employ GDS connectivity enjoy approximately 40 percent of leisure travel marketshare,” said Macchio. “And the pressure to reduce costs precipitated by airline commission cutbacks indicates a likely trend toward further use of electronic distribution in booking leisure travel. Tour operators who don’t employ connectivity risk getting left behind.”

“Clearly, success for tour operators in the future will come to those who maximize the visibility and accessibility of their products,” said Flo Lugli, President of WizCom. “WizCom has proven expertise in providing the hotel and car rental industries with electronic connectivity, and this expertise in now available to the tour operator industry.”

WizCom International, Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Cendant Corporation (NYSE: CD), is a leading global provider of electronic reservations processing and information management systems for the travel industry. WizCom provides its hotel, car rental, and tour / leisure travel customers with innovative, flexible and cost-effective electronic distribution and e-commerce solutions for the Internet, GDS and / or other travel reservation systems. Established in 1987, WizCom has an extensive customer base with more than 90 hotel companies and over 25 car rental firms operating in more than forty countries worldwide. .