Sabre ratcheted up its pressure on Air
Canada, removing the schedules and availability displays for the
airlines higher-end Executive and Latitude Plus fares.
The removal of
these C, J (Executive) and Y (Latitude Plus) fares, which took
effect Thursday afternoon, was designed to pressure Air Canada to
restore its no-frills Tango fares to the major GDSs and Air Canadas
travel agency Web site.
Sabres actions were
for points of sale in the U.S. and elsewhere around the world,
except for Canada and European Union countries, where the GDSs are
On the evening of
May 2, Sabre began its actions against Air Canada, biasing the
airlines flight displays and ensuring that other airlines inventory
appears higher on travel agents screens than Air Canadas when the
prices are equal.
Air Canada stated
Friday morning that it is unaware of any other punitive actions
taken against the airlines by other GDSs. Air Canada has content
agreements with Sabre, Amadeus and Galileo. Worldspan declined to
comment on the matter, and Air Canada apparently has no content
agreement with Worldspan.
In a letter to
travel agencies May 4, Amadeus stated that it is extremely
disappointed with Air Canadas decision to withdraw Tango fares from
travel agents and to make them available solely on AirCanada.com.
that it had just recently reached an agreement with Air Canada to
add to its GDS Tango and Tango Plus fares for flights sold in
North, Central and South America. Previously, Amadeus had a content
agreement for Latititude, Latitude Plus and Executive Class
encourage you to contact Air Canada directly to discuss the
availability of their Tango fares through the Amadeus system to
enable the proper and efficient serving of your mutual customers,
the Amadeus letter stated.
Distribution Services, too, condemned Air Canadas decision to
remove Tango fares and said it is discussing a resolution of the
matter with Air Canada.
ASTA on Friday blasted
Air Canada's actions, saying "this practice impairs the efficiency
of travel agencies and limits consumer choice of preferred channels
for buying air travel."
debases the airlines' yields ... and is counterproductive to the
achievement of sustainable profitability for the airlines," ASTA
ASTA, which criticized
Air Canada for its lack of notice regarding the removal of Tango
fares, said "a dark cloud hovers over the Air Canada
ASTA said it has been
in touch with Air Canada and has been unsuccessful in getting the
airline to explain the implication of its position in all
will be incurred by everyone affected and, faced with obscure
explanations of why Tango Plus, supposedly a more expensive and
feature-rich fare than Tango, is in the U.S., actually cheaper than
Tango, consumers may choose to fly on other airlines," ASTA
Air Canada said May 2 that it removed
Tango fares from Sabre, Galileo and Amadeus because the GDSs dont
have the technology to sell them -- including offering certain
discounts and add-ons -- the way Air Canada does on its own Web
Sabre claimed that
Air Canada wanted Sabre to foot the development costs necessary to
change the way its flights are displayed and sold in the Sabre
Air Canada declined
to comment on Sabres actions, but pointed out that Tango fares for
U.S. transborder routes were available only in Florida markets
year-round, although they were used on a tactical basis in other
U.S. transborder routes.
The airline stated
that Tango Plus fares were unaffected by its decision to remove
Tango fares from the GDSs.
reporter Dennis Schaal, send e-mail to [email protected].