Orbitz last week launched its Supplier Link technology with
American Airlines, making it the first Internet company to replace
all intermediary functionality to book tickets directly with
airline reservation systems.
The move enables Orbitz to bypass Worldspan, which until now
provided the link between Orbitz and American and collected booking
fees in the process.
With Orbitz’s supplier-link model, airlines no longer pay GDS
booking fees based on the number of segments. Rather, they pay
Orbitz a flat fee for each ticket. There are no rebooking or
The Worldspan bypass will cut American’s booking fees by 77% for
tickets bought via the airline-owned Orbitz.com, the Web site
Orbitz expects to implement the same supplier-link technology
with US Airways and two unnamed airlines later this year.
Seven more carriers Alaska, America West, Delta, Hawaiian,
Midwest Express, National and United signed agreements for supplier
links with Orbitz.