Air France-KLM to charge for GDS bookings

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Air France

Move follows its competitors Lufthansa, British Airways and Iberia

Following its competitors Lufthansa, British Airways and Iberia, Air France-KLM has confirmed that it too will impose a distribution surcharge on GDS sales from April 1 next year.

The as yet unspecified surcharge will not apply to travel agency sales via the International Air Transport Association’s New Distribution Capability (NDC) connection or to Air France and KLM direct sales channels.

“In order to best serve customers, Air France-KLM is embracing NDC, an enriched IATA messaging standard allowing the distribution of rich content and personalised offers, and investing in options for travel partners to access, book and sell it,” the group explained, as reported by Travolution.

“At the same time, in order to adapt to market circumstances and to further improve its efficiency, Air France-KLM will implement a distribution surcharge on GDS sales, effective from April 1st 2018.”

Loyalty scheme

Today, a “complete re-engineering” of the group’s Flying Blue loyalty scheme will be unveiled, also scheduled to be launched on April 1. The aim of this is to “enrich the travel experience, stimulate the loyalty towards our airlines and maximise the attractiveness”.

The disclosures come as Air France-KLM reports a 39% increase in operating profits for the summer quarter, to just over €1 billion. Passenger numbers rose to almost 28 million, up 5%, with load factor rising 1.7 percentage points to 89.2%.

There was a particularly strong premium class long-haul performance, with these unit revenues up 8.3%, while economy rose by 3.1%. This improvement was mainly driven by a strong recovery in Asia, where unit revenues rose 8.8%, and Latin America up 12.1%.

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