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Easyjet is set to benefit from an enhanced presence on the Sabre Travel Network GDS.
Business travel agents and corporate clients using Sabre will now be able to select seats and other ancillaries on Easyjet flights without going to the airline’s website.
The move is the latest in Easyjet’s long-running attempts to make it easier for the business travel sector to book its flights. The airline has already announced similar improvements with Sabre’s rival GDS owners Amadeus and Travelport, which owns both Galileo and Worldspan.
Under the deal with Sabre, agents will now be able to select and pay for specific seats on Easyjet flights as well as enhanced search capabilities to look for the cheapest options across a range of dates.
Andrew Hodges, Easyjet’s director of sales, distribution and business, said: “Over the last few years one of Easyjet’s primary goals has been to grow its share of the managed corporate travel sector. By developing our relationship with Sabre we are taking another important step towards fulfilling that ambition.
“Easyjet’s core objective is to make travel easy and affordable for all travellers, and we know that corporations and TMCs will derive excellent value by being able to book our fares and ancillaries through Sabre’s travel marketplace.”
The airline has made attracting business travellers one of its core goals over the last two years – the move is set to help the airline to make record pre-tax profits of £470 million-£480 million during the financial year to the end of September.
Harald Eisenaecher, senior vice president for Sabre EMEA, added: “Online and traditional agencies, and the corporations and travellers they serve, will reap the benefits of being able to shop Easyjet’s fares and bags in one request.
“The ability to shop, book and pay for seats at the point of sale is also a huge step forward. It will save agents time, make agencies more efficient, and mean travellers receive even better levels of service.
“We recognise how important the agency channel is for Easyjet, and by providing these new options in our marketplace we remain focused on helping it reach its targets.”
Ryanair has also started to make a play for the corporate sector but chief executive Michael O’Leary has so far been adamant that its fares will not go on the GDSs due to the “ludicrous amounts of money” charged to the airline in fees.