Travelport GDS, one of the world’s leading global distribution system (GDS) providers, and Jet2.com, one of Europe’s leading low cost carriers (LCCs), have today announced details of a new direct connect content agreement. Under the new agreement, Jet2.com’s full content will be made available in the GDS channel for the first time via Galileo’s direct connect solution. Jet2.com is now the third airline this year to sign up to Galileo’s innovative LCC direct connect solution.
Travelport confirmed that the development of its direct connect product was a reflection of the growing importance of the low cost air sector and the demands of its travel agency customers to have the content available through the GDS channel. The new direct connect participation option, which complements the traditional channel offering a further 60 low cost carriers, has sparked considerable interest amongst the low cost carrier community and Travelport expects to announce further direct connect agreements over the coming weeks.
The solution, now being widely used by travel agencies throughout Europe, was introduced early last year with launch partner easyJet. Since its launch, travel agents have reported greatly improved efficiency and productivity compared to booking via the web, which typically takes agents four times longer. In contrast to low cost carrier websites (and other GDS providers), the Galileo direct connect solution uniquely gives agents the ability to book low cost carrier and traditional airline flights in the same passenger name record (PNR) - for example, outbound Jet2.com and inbound British Airways.
By booking the low cost carrier content via the GDS, agents also benefit from the automatic handoff of the booking data to their mid or back office systems for accounting purposes.
Jerome Moisan, General Manager, UK & Ireland for Travelport GDS, commented: “In today’s challenging economic environment, we are seeing more and more businesses wanting to tightly manage their travel expenditure and this technology effectively enables travel agents to compare low cost alternatives alongside traditional airfares in their preferred booking environment. It also provides low cost airlines with a very efficient and simple means of distribution.”
“Our successful implementation across Europe has indicated that booking a low cost flight using this solution is significantly faster than any previous method used by travel agents. We are delighted to now be able to offer the same efficiency on Jet2.com’s flights,” continued Moisan.
Steve Lee, Jet2.com’s Commercial Director, commented: “We firmly believe in making our inventory easily accessible to the travel trade and appreciate for many that their preferred booking environment is via the GDS and this new direct connect agreement with Galileo enables us to do just that. Galileo’s very extensive network of travel agencies provides us with another efficient means of distribution and the opportunity to further grow our distribution channels.”
The solution has already been successfully rolled-out to Galileo travel agencies across Europe and is soon to be launched in the Middle East and Africa.