CWT speaks out against Lufthansa’s GDS fee

Travel firm says GDSs are best distribution solution
Travel management company Carlson Wagonlit Travel has spoken out against Lufthansa Group’s implementation of the additional €16 fee for bookings made via GDSs since September.
The airline group, which encompasses Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Lufthansa and SWISS, has also revealed plans to enable direct connect solutions with various industry partners as well as exclusive offerings outside of GDSs.
Scott Brennan, CWT’s executive vice president and head of global supplier management, said there are fundamental issues with these initiatives due to, among other factors, fragmentation of content that creates complex manual searching and booking, and less comprehensive comparison shopping resulting in reduced visibility of competitive fares.
It also suggests there is additional cost – even if Lufthansa’s €16 fee is avoided – to bring bookings made directly with Lufthansa back into the managed program and to manage inefficiencies and complexities related to changes, exchanges, refunds, invoicing and reporting.
CWT claims that GDSs currently present the most efficient, complete and cost-effective distribution solution currently available for the corporate travel industry.
TTG Asia