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The 'big three' GDS firms – Amadeus, Sabre and Travelport – all say they welcome the US Department of Transportation’s (DOT) decision to provisionally approve Resolution 787, the foundation document for the New Distribution Capability (NDC).
The provisional approval includes a number of safeguards that ensures: no traveller is required to provide personal information to receive a fare offer, that the standard remains voluntary and each airline is free to choose its own data exchange methodologies.
All three GDS firms said they welcomed the proposal with these safeguards in place.
Amadeus’s VP of industry affairs, Svend Leirvaag, said it was “encouraging” to see those conditions recognised in the DOT’s tentative ruling as well as IATA “reiterating its support for them”. He added: “Critically, these conditions would ensure that the new capability would not impose any specific business model to airline distribution; would not compromise customer data security nor specify data ownership; would not impose any particular data standard on IATA members; and would not restrict backward compatibility with existing standards.
In a statement Sabre said it “fully supports the DOT’s decision, but said this support was “subject to the specified conditions, of IATA’s proposal to create a technology standard”. Sabre said it will continue to be a strategic collaborator with IATA towards its shared goals.
Travelport said it was “pleased” the DOT is requiring airlines to disclose ancillary products and fees and view it as “pro-consumer”. The travel tech company said in a statement: “With regard to Travelport specifically, we have been leading this effort through our groundbreaking Travelport Merchandising Platform utilising Universal API and XML connectivity options to airlines. This platform was developed to allow airlines to distribute and differentiate all of their fares and ancillaries via the travel agency channel, connecting to Travelport exactly how they chose to, while enabling travel agencies to fully compare the offers from those airlines.”
DOT said any objections to the ruling must be filed by June 11.