Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Travolution@NBTA in Chicago - Part 1

Tricia Holly Davis, one of Travolution’s regular writers, is in Chicago attending the National Business Travel Association's annual bash and will be blogging for us over the coming days.

Her first missive arrived this morning. She writes:

Those of you who read the cover story featured in the April issue of Travolution may recall the mouthy statements made by Emirates, which said it was fed up with being gouged by the GDSs and was consequently exploring direct connect options with its top travel agency partners and alternative distribution channels.

Well, it seems Emirates wasn’t bluffing. The carrier revealed it will establish a direct connection to Farelogix, the “GNE” set-up by David Cerino, one of the brains behind Orbitz.

The agreement, announced here in Chicago, marks the first of its kind between an international carrier outside of North America and an alternative distribution system. Farelogix already holds agreements with five US carriers.

The companies estimate the first phase of the implementation will be completed by the end of the third quarter of this year.

There’s no word yet on other whether other international carriers will follow suit, but bets are on BA.

Tricia Holly Davis, freelance journalist in Chicago

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