Expedia will begin offering the ability to search for and book branded fares from airlines in 2015.
The online travel agency has partnered with Amadeus for a new solution that allows carriers to distribute their customised fare products on the Expedia site.
Using the Amadeus Airlines Fare Families tool, airlines will be able to sell branded fares that could include basic, seat-only and premium options, flexible change and refund policies, checked bags and in-flight services.
“Price remains the single most important attribute for our customers when searching for their flights. However, when it comes to actually selecting flights, we are seeing customers pay closer attention to features such as baggage inclusion, seat selection and changeability as critical variables,” said Greg Schulze, senior vice president of global tour & transport at Expedia.
“The challenge with branded fares when customers see it at scale across multiple airlines will be ensuring they can make heads or tails of the increasing number of competitive offers. Instead of choosing from a few dozen flights that suit your needs from point A to point B with the times and airports you want, you’ll now see a whole set of branded fares on top of that,” he added.
Holger Taubmann, Amadeus’ senior vice president of distribution, commented; “Merchandising and retailing are vital elements in order for travel players to better meet to the needs of the traveller and to unlock additional revenues in a rapidly changing market, and this partnership is in line with our vision to make these revenues available for our customers. We believe this standardized solution will be hugely beneficial for the industry.”
The company plans to go live with “select carriers” by mid-2015, with several more set to come online by the end of the year.