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Photo: IATA

“Payment transparency” goes live in Nordics first

IATA’s new scheme for airlines and travel agents goes live in Norway, Sweden, Finland, later Denmark.

The International Air Transport Association has revealed that its new Transparency in Payments (TIP) system, being pioneered in Scandinavia, is now being rolled out.

It has now been implemented in the markets of Sweden, Norway and Finland, with Iceland and Denmark to follow on May 9 and the rest of the world after that.

TIP, which is being introduced in conjunction with NewGen ISS, is an initiative focused on providing airlines with increased transparency and control in the collection of their sales generated in the travel agency channel.

It will at the same time enable agents to take advantage of new forms of payment for the remittance of customer funds, IATA says.

“The current landscape for payment services has changed dramatically, and new players and payment solutions are emerging, offering travel agents greater options to remit customer funds to airlines,” explains Aleks Popovich, IATA’s senior vice president for financial and distribution services.

“However, up until now, airlines have lacked visibility into these newer payment methods. TIP will address this issue, creating new opportunities for airlines and travel agents.”

No form of remittance is barred by TIP, but travel agents can only use forms to which an airline has previously given consent.

And, if an airline agrees, TIP explicitly allows agents to use their own credit cards.

Alternative transfer methods
IATA says it has worked closely with industry stakeholders to develop TIP, to ensure it provides increased transparency and control for everyone.

It has also worked to provide an “efficient framework and tools to enable agents and airlines to bilaterally agree on usage of Alternative Transfer Methods, such as an agent’s own credit cards and an agent’s virtual account numbers (VANs), for the direct remittance to airlines of agency Billing and Settlement Plan (BSP) sales”.

Popovich adds: “We look forward to working with providers of alternative transfer methods such as AirPlus International and Edenred Corporate Payment, who support the principles underlying TIP. We anticipate that other providers will commit to enrolling their products within the TIP framework once their technical environment is ready.”

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