Airlines Cut Commissions For Internet Travel Sites

from the beating-up-on-the-techies dept

In a surprise move today two major airlines said they’ll no longer pay commissions to online travel sites. They will continue to pay to traditional travel agents, though. This is forcing the online sites to add a surcharge to tickets from these airlines. Initially, this looks stupid, because it will make their tickets appear more expensive than competitors. The fear, however, is that the competitors will follow suit, and there will have to be a surcharge on all tickets. This will make online travel sites much less appealing, since you’ll be able to get cheaper tickets directly from the airlines. That, as you can imagine, is not a good scenario for online travel sites. What’s so surprising is that these airlines have only cut commissions to internet travel sites – cutting off this new (and cheaper) channel. It seems like a fairly reactionary move.

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