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Entries in Expedia (4)

Wednesday
Mar072012

Gas Prices Not Keeping Americans from Dreams of Cross Country Drives

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(BELLEVUE, Wash.) -- The extra cost of filling up at the pump isn't stopping some Americans from at least dreaming about driving across the country, according to the travel website Expedia.

In a recent survey, Expedia learned that while a quarter of men and a third of women say they have never gone coast-to-coast in a car, they’ve “always wanted to.”

And even though the distance seems daunting, millions have apparently gone the distance.  In fact, the survey found that 41 percent have driven across the country and that nearly half of the male respondents claim to have made the trip.

However, as gas prices keep rising, the tendency is to stick closer to home when making vacation plans, the survey said.

Over 2,260 adults were interviewed for the survey conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of Expedia.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jan052011

American Airlines Dropped by Another Travel Site

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(NEW YORK) -- American Airlines says it now hopes to reach deals to resume ticket sales with Internet travel agent sites Expedia and Orbitz after dropping its fares from Orbitz last month and then seeing Expedia retaliate by partially hiding American fares from its search function.

American's announcement comes just as Sabre, a behind-the-scenes provider of airfare data to travel agencies, announced it will display American Airlines information less prominently.

These are just the latest development in what has become an escalating stand-off between American and ticket distributors over the fees associated with selling airfare.

Airlines pay fees to third-party sites, such as Travelocity, Expedia or Orbitz, that sell seats on their flights. Those fees can be as high as $4 per flight segment, according to Robert Mann, an airline consultant and president of R.W. Mann & Company.

American, like most of the major airlines, sells about two thirds of its tickets through third-party sites but has been trying to rein in those costs and also direct more customers to its own website, a model favored by Southwest Airlines. What makes Sabre's move particularity interesting is that the system, which services most of the airlines, was originally designed to help American with its bookings and was once part of the airline.

Sabre, along with Amadeus, Galileo and Worldspan, are known as a global distribution systems, or GDS, and they provide most of the back-end airfare data to traditional travel agents, corporate travel departments and online travel sites Orbitz and Expedia.

If American can't reach a resolution with Orbitz and Expedia, it is going to have to train customers to go through other channels to find its flights.

Any American Airlines tickets previously sold on these sites are still valid.

So far, no other major airline has followed American's lead in fighting with the big three booking sites. However, last month, Delta did pull its tickets off three smaller travel sites: CheapOair, BookIt.com and One Travel.

The travel sites aren't too happy.

"American Airlines is attempting to introduce a new direct connect model that will result in higher costs and reduced transparency for consumers, making it difficult to compare American Airlines' ticket prices and options with offerings by other airlines," Expedia said in a statement released last week. "American Airlines' direct connect model is of questionable, if any, benefit to travelers, would be costly to build and maintain and would compromise travel agents' ability to provide travelers with the best selection."

For its part, American says that ticket sales have not been hurt after the break with the travel companies, which has now lasted about three weeks.

Airfare experts say the ongoing battle will mean more work for passengers looking for the cheapest flights.

"The move does make things a bit more difficult for consumers in terms of comparison shopping, since they will have to remember to search American separately if using Orbitz," said Anne Banas, executive editor of the travel website SmarterTravel. "However, my advice would be to use a meta-search engine like Bing Travel or Kayak that searches multiple sites -- including Orbitz and American -- at the same time." 

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Jan022011

Expedia Dumps American Airlines; Changes Coming to Online Booking?

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- There could be some big changes coming to the way many Americans book their airfares.  Major airlines are looking to take back some control from online travel agencies like Orbitz and Expedia.  Feuds are breaking out between the carriers and the websites.

Expedia has dumped American Airlines from its site as American seeks more control over how its seats are made available online.  The nation's third-largest carrier would also like passengers to book through its own website.

Expedia downgraded American's prominence on its site recently after American pulled itself from rival booker Orbitz.  Now Expedia has gone all the way.  It's a pitched battle with potential damage for both sides.

The airlines can lose website exposure when consumers go shopping to compare fares, but the websites lose options for their customers.  That makes it that much harder to stay competitive.

Delta has pulled its fares from some of the smaller online bookers, but that is expected to have less impact than the American Airlines-Expedia feud.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Dec292010

American Airlines Continues to See Increase in Ticket Sales Despite Dispute with Orbitz and Expedia

Photo Courtesy - PRNewsFoto | JetBlue Airways(FORT WORTH, Texas) -- American Airlines thanked its customers Wednesday for their continued loyalty in the midst of a commercial dispute with two online travel companies, Expedia and Orbitz. 

Notwithstanding the dispute's prevention of American Airlines fares from being promoted on both travel sites, the airline reported seeing a year-over-year increase in its overall ticket sales since Dec. 21, when its schedules and airfares were removed from Orbitz.com.  The increase continued after Dec. 23, when Expedia.com began listing American lower in the search display than other airlines.

American Airlines noted that more customers have now shifted to other channels such as Priceline.com and Kayak.com, and it has also seen increased volume on its own site, AA.com.

"Our results to date show that customer choice is alive and well and that our customers continue to have thousands of options to purchase American's competitive fares and convenient schedules," said Derek DeCross, vice president and general sales manager at American Airlines.

DeCross also highlighted the company's interest in working with a variety of different distribution channels from conventional travel agencies to online and global distribution outlets.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio