SOUTHLAKE, Texas, Jan. 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Sabre Travel Network, a
Sabre Holdings (NYSE: TSG) company, today announced that British Airways has
joined its Direct Connect Availability (DCA) Three-Year Option. This program
commits the carrier to a three-year term at the highest level of participation
in the Sabre global distribution system (GDS) in exchange for a reduced
booking fee, fixed for three years.
"This innovative program helps us significantly lower our distribution
costs, while ensuring that Sabre Connected travel agents automatically have
access to the full range of British Airways fares," said Dale Moss, director
of sales worldwide at British Airways. "By making all our published fares
available through the Sabre GDS we are making agents as competitive as any of
our other sales and distribution channels."
The move by British Airways, the first major European carrier to
participate in the program, brings to 24 the number of airlines participating
in the DCA Three-Year Option, including all of the 'Big Six' US carriers.
When selling seats through the Sabre GDS, airlines select one of several
levels of participation in the system. DCA is the highest level of Sabre GDS
participation and provides airlines with the widest range of services to
market and sell their products. The Three-Year Option was introduced for
bookings made in the United States in October 2002, and was extended in
April 2003, to include bookings made in Europe.
Airlines signing the DCA Three-Year Option agree to provide all Sabre
users with all their published fares. This includes published fares that the
airlines sell through any third-party Web site or their own Web sites and
reservation offices. Sabre Connected agents do not need to opt in for this
access. In return, Sabre Travel Network reduces its booking fee and fixes
this rate for three years.
"The DCA Three-Year Option is a win-win-win for all parties," said John
Stow, president of Sabre Travel Network. "British Airways significantly
lowers its distribution costs, travel agencies are able to enhance their
competitiveness and customer service, travelers gain wide access to key
British Airways fares, including Web fares, through the channel of their
choice and Sabre Travel Network gains a three year commitment from the
airline. In addition, through this agreement, Sabre Connected agencies in the
U.K. gain competitive advantage through automatic access to all fares with no
About the program - how it works:
-- Participating airlines commit to the highest level of participation
in the Sabre GDS (DCA level) for three years.
-- Participating airlines provide all Sabre GDS users broad access to
schedules, seat availability and published fares, including Web fares
and other promotional fares, but excluding opaque fares and private
-- Participating airlines furnish generally the same customer perks and
amenities to passengers booked through the Sabre GDS as those
afforded through other GDSs.
-- Sabre Travel Network provides participating airlines with a reduction
to their current applicable DCA booking fee.
-- Sabre Travel Network fixes the DCA booking fee rate for three years.
About Sabre Travel Network
Sabre Travel Network, a Sabre Holdings company, provides access to the
world's leading global distribution system (GDS) and products and services
enabling agents at more than 56,000 agency locations worldwide to be travel
experts. Originally developed in 1960, the Sabre GDS was the first system to
connect the buyers and sellers of travel. Today the system includes more than
400 airlines, approximately 60,000 hotels, 53 car rental companies, nine
cruise lines, 36 railroads and 232 tour operators.
Sabre Holdings Corporation (NYSE: TSG) is a world leader in travel
commerce, retailing travel products and providing distribution and technology
solutions for the travel industry. More information about Sabre Holdings is
available at http://www.sabre-holdings.com
Statements in this release which are not purely historical facts,
including statements about traveler confidence in obtaining competitive
airline rates from all Sabre distribution channels and airlines' acceptance of
the new participation level, or other statements about anticipations, beliefs,
expectations, hopes, intentions or strategies for the future, may be forward-
looking statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Readers are cautioned not to place undue
reliance on forward-looking statements. All forward-looking statements are
based upon information available to Sabre Holdings on the date this release
was issued. Sabre Holdings undertakes no obligation to publicly update or
revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information,
future events or otherwise. Any forward-looking statements involve risks and
uncertainties that could cause actual events or results to differ materially
from the events or results described in the forward-looking statements,
including risks or uncertainties related to: the computer reservation system
rules proposed by the Department of Transportation; Sabre Holdings' revenues
being highly dependent on the travel and transportation industries; airlines
limiting their participation in travel marketing and distribution services;
and structural changes within the travel industry, such as the financial
instability or bankruptcy of many of the air carriers. Sabre Holdings may not
succeed in addressing these and other risks. Further information regarding
factors that could affect our financial and other results can be found in the
risk factors section of our most recent filing on Form 10-Q with the
Securities and Exchange Commission.
SOURCE Sabre Travel Network