Lufthansa Accelerates Managed Travel 2.0

Broken pavement grayLufthansa Group announced it will charge 16 Euros for each booking made in the GDS channel.

This is a seismic event for the corporate travel industry for these reasons:

  • Channel steering becomes a differentiator for legacy carriers
  • GDS/TMC  and GDS/airline economics will need re-shaping
  • TMC/Corporate deals and service levels will need re-engineering
  • The value proposition for TMCs gets murkier while their need for adding non-booking value becomes crucial
  • Closing the data loop for corporate direct bookings becomes imperative

My best guess about the steady-state result?  Managed Travel 2.0 will be widely enabled, if not adopted.  (Kindly recall that MT 2.0 is not the same as Open Booking.  The former closes the data loop between supplier-direct bookings and the corporate buyer; the latter does not – that’s called unmanaged travel.)

But much depends over the next few years on Continue reading

Direct Connect By Google – Oh Yes

It’s a simple formula. Google Flight Search + Airlines’ Hunger for Direct Connect = Trouble for GDSs.

You may think Google Flight Search is just another meta search tool.  I think it is a major step in a campaign to build direct connections between airlines and travelers. Google Flight Search is GDS Bypass personified.

Google sees the GDSs as fortresses, producing hundreds of millions of captive airline searches beyond the reach of any search engine. Searches that need to be freed. Searches that should have the right to be completed directly with the supplier. Searches that in their basic form can be served up quite nicely with Google Flight Search.

But the campaign is far from over.  Airline products are Continue reading