For many years, Global Distribution Systems (GDS) have acted as the primary platform for Travel Management Companies (TMC’s) and Online travel agencies (OTA`s) for accessing airline products. .
The GDS distributes several fragments of airline product including fares, availability and schedules into an immensely powerful central system, enabling Business Travel Agencies to source, hold, book, manage, control and change airline reservations, delivering savings and creating flexibility for travellers.
However, driven by recent advances in technology, some major international airlines have re-evaluated the distribution of their content and have started to provide their range of ancillary products directly to TMC’s, rather than selling through the GDS. This enables airlines to sell a wider range of ancillary products such as pre-booking seats, adding luggage or making catering requests providing more flexibility for the consumer whilst yielding higher profits for the Airlines themselves.
In this changing landscape of travel content distribution, a number of options are now available for Travel Management Companies to source travel content. Here at Good Travel Management, we use ‘direct connect’ channels in addition to the Global Distribution System as a way of booking travel for our clients.
In the hotel sector, ‘direct connect’ can be invaluable for hotel content related to suppliers such as ‘Premier Inn’ and ‘Travelodge’ who feed their availability to the Travel Management Companies’ booking systems via XML feed. This enables the TMC to act as a hotel aggregator using its own booking systems, by comparing the GDS with its wide range of hotel rate access, with that of the direct connect hotel suppliers.
Below, we have listed a few key components of the benefits GDS systems still offer below for booking air tickets:
#1 A GDS allows Business Travel Agencies to hold seat flexibly and offer savings to clients without being restricted to the conditions of the airfare before a ticket issue deadline.
#2 If a client needs 24-hour support on their trips, “24-hour” dedicated teams can help manage and rebook trips instantly, avoiding passengers having to wait in long queues with an airline call centre or stranded at the airport desk.
#4 Travel Management Companies using the GDS save their clients time providing the payment and credit for their ticket as opposed to clients paying themselves. This alleviates the time paying on a credit card and claiming expense back.
Using Global Distribution Systems still offer major benefits in the control and management of flight reservations. If you would like to know more, please speak your dedicated Account Manager who will be able to go into more detail for you.