T The heat is on
for GDSs to perform
By Jorge Sidron
he number of agencies using a GDS to make in the number of segments booked in
travel reservations has dropped 3.5% since last 2005 vs. 2004, with 6.3% of respon-
Worldspan’s headquarters in Atlanta. Worldspan serves year, to 86.3%, according to survey data col- dents saying they booked “a lot less.”
11,000 traditional agency locations and about 65 online About 26% of respondents said they
travel agencies in more than 60 countries. lected by ASTA that looked at GDS usage and
contracts. saw an increase in bookings.
air bookings 40%
the lion’s share
of GDS busi- 30%
ness, with ASTA
agents report- 25%
ing they booked 20%
83.9% of all
air bookings 15%
through the 10%
that number 5%
was down from 0%
the 2005 average of 86.2%.
Amadeus’ regional headquarters in Bangkok, Thailand. Sabre
Amadeus has more than 75 local and regional offices agents’ use of Worldspan
covering frontline activities in more than 215 markets. the GDS for car
rentals, hotels Galileo/Apollo
and tours re- Amadeus
mained on par
with 2005 numbers, agents’ use of the
GDS for booking cruises increased
significantly to 37.5% this year com-
pared with 25.2% in 2005.
Having access to Internet fares
through the GDS is this year’s No. 1
issue for ASTA agents, according to
54% of respondents. Financial incentives from the GDS was the most important issue for 18% of agencies using the GDS, with almost 17% saying
the elimination of shortfall penalties
was their No. 1 priority.
ASTA attributed the drop to the 33.1% of respondents saying they
number of GDS New Entrants use Sabreexclusively. Galileo/Apollo
(GNE) or Limited Travel Dis- and Worldspan each have about 25%
tributors (LTD) entering the mar- of the GDS users, while Amadeus is
ket as well as to the imposition usedbyabout21%of agencies.
of the per-segment fees recently
introduced by the major airlines on GDS CRUISE BOOKINGS CLIMB
agents who use nonpreferred book- According to ASTA, all GDS vening channels. dors are reporting significant in-
According to ASTA, of those agen- creases in the number of customers
cies that use a GDS to make travel who own their equipment. The most
bookings, the large majority, or significant change was reported by
94.4%, use just one GDS. The re- Sabre, which saw the percentage of
maining agencies use two or more. customers owning their own equip-The number of agencies using mul- ment jump from 81.8% to 97.2%.
tiple GDSs decreased 2% from last Meanwhile, agency segment pro-year. duction decreased in 2005 compared
Sabre remains the most popular with 2004, according to ASTA. More
GDS among ASTA agencies, with agencies, 41.9%, reported a decrease
GDS Used in ASTA O
Sabre Holdings, headquartered in Southlake, Texas, supports travelers, travel agents, corporations and travel
suppliers through its companies, Travelocity, Sabre Travel Network and Sabre Airline Solutions, in 45 countries.
Sabre is consistently the favored GDS among ASTA agencies, according to ASTA research.