For more than 50 years, Sabre® has transformed the airline industry through technological advancement.
The first passenger reservations system offered by Sabre, installed in 1960, marked a dramatic technological leap forward for the airline industry, automating one of its key business areas. In the following years, Sabre Airline Solutions® pioneered technological advances for the industry in areas such as revenue management, pricing, flight scheduling, cargo, flight operations and crew scheduling. And not only did we help invent electronic commerce for the travel industry, the company holds claim to progressive solutions that defined — and continue to revolutionize — the travel and transportation marketplace.
The history of the Sabre system began with a chance meeting …
C.R. Smith, president of American Airlines, and R. Blair Smith, a senior sales representative for IBM, met on an American Airlines flight from Los Angeles to New York in 1953. Their conversation about the travel industry sparked the idea for a data processing system that could create and manage airline seat reservations and instantly make that data available electronically to any agent at any location.
Six years later, the airborne exchange of ideas became a reality. American Airlines and IBM jointly announced their plans to develop a Semi-Automated Business Research Environment, better known as SABRE. The revolutionary system was the first real-time business application, and it enabled American Airlines to replace the handwritten passenger reservations system of the 1950s with the automated reservations system for the future.
The first Sabre® system was installed on two IBM 7090 computers, located in a specially designed computer center in Briarcliff Manor, New York. The state-of-the-art mainframe system processed 84,000 telephone calls per day. The initial research, development and installation investment in this system took 400 man-years of effort at a development cost of almost US$40 million.
The network is completed, becoming the largest private, real-time data processing system, second only to the U.S. government’s system. It becomes an integral part of AMR, saving American Airlines 30 percent on its investments in staff alone.
The Sabre system is moved to a new consolidated computer center in Tulsa, Okla. that was designed to house all of American Airlines’ data processing facilities.
The Sabre system is installed in a travel agency for the first time, triggering the wave of travel automation. By the end of the year, 130 locations had received the system. By 1978, the Sabre system could store 1 million fares.
The Sabre system becomes available to Canadian travel agents.
Bargain FinderSM pricing is introduced via the Sabre system. This low-fare search capability automatically advises which class of service is the least expensive for the flights booked — a service unmatched in the industry.
The introduction of easySabre® allows consumers using personal computers to tap into the Sabre system via online services to access airline, hotel and car rental reservations.
Sabre becomes a division of AMR, the parent company of American Airlines.
Sabre Airline Solutions® releases the industry’s first revenue management system, helping maximize airline income by optimizing the fare at which each seat is sold. Sabre Airline Solutions also invents the virtual and continuous nesting concepts for revenue management.
The Sabre system is extended to the United Kingdom, paving the way for widespread international expansion of the system in the next decade.
Sabre Airline Solutions begins providing software, consulting and systems management services to other airlines in areas such as revenue accounting, yield management and crew scheduling.
The Sabre system expands to store 36 million fares, which can be combined to create more than 1 billion fare options.
Sabre introduces the Sabre® AirFlite™ flight scheduling system.
Sabre and SNCF (French National Railroad) install the RESARAIL™ rail reservations and distribution system for the TGV network. The system is subsequently extended to the English Channel Tunnel.
The Sabre Group does an IPO of 18 percent of stock.
Travelocity.com launches March 12, 1996.
Sabre Airline Solutions completes the largest system migration in the airline industry's history when 200 US Airways systems are shut down and shifted to Sabre systems.
Sabre forms a joint venture with ABACUS International to establish the SabreSonic® passenger solution as the CRS market leader in Asia.
Sabre introduces Best Fare Finder pricing, which allows travel agents to search for flights based on fare rather than schedule.
Travelocity announces it will merge with Preview Travel — the third largest online travel site at the time.
Sabre spins off from AMR 100 percent.
Sabre purchases GetThere, an online corporate travel booking tool.
Sabre® eVoyaSM Webtop is introduced as the next generation of travel agency technology tools, making it simple for Sabre ConnectedSM agencies to become Internet ready.
Sabre purchases the Sabre Pacific travel distribution business from TIAS, a travel distribution alliance among Qantas, Air New Zealand and Ansett Airlines. The purchase gives travel suppliers, travel agents and travelers in the South Pacific region greater access to Sabre global resources and technology.
Sabre Airline Solutions introduces the Sabre® Aerodynamic Traveler™ passenger processing solutions designed to expedite the airline check-in process and reduce long lines at airports through the use of curbside check-in, roving agents and self-serve kiosks.
The massive Sabre air pricing application is migrated to HP NonStop™ Himalaya™ server platform. This technology is designed to migrate airfare pricing, schedules and availability from a proprietary mainframe system to an open system.
Travelocity acquires Site59, a leading online seller of last-minute merchant model air, hotel and rental car inventory.
Sabre Holdings purchases the outstanding shares of Travelocity it didn’t already own, making Travelocity a wholly owned subsidiary of Sabre Holdings.
Sabre Holdings announces its Direct Connect Availability Three-Year Option (DCA-3), a new multi-year offering for airlines in participating carrier agreement. In exchange for an established booking fee rate, the carrier commits to the highest level of participation in the GDS.
Travelocity introduces Travelocity Business™ to serve corporate travel agencies and business travelers.
Travelocity introduces TotalTrip, which offers new packaging capabilities.
Travelocity acquires World Choice Travel, a hotel room consolidation and distribution business.
Sabre Travel Network launches MySabre™, a new Web-based agent booking portal that provides agents and suppliers with new merchandizing opportunities at the point of sale.
Travelocity launches its French consumer travel website, Odysia (www.odysia.fr), a variation on the French word for "Odyssey," giving Travelocity its first consumer-direct online presence in France.
Travelocity acquires Las Vegas-based All State Tours, Inc., a leading distributor of show tickets and tours in the entertainment capital of the world. The purchase included Allstate Ticketing and ShowTickets.com.
Sabre Holdings acquires SynXis Corp., a privately held provider of reservation management, distribution and technology services for hotels.
In April, Sabre Holdings acquires IgoUgo.com, a unique travel community website, and launched the industry's first travel keyword search engine on the newly acquired site.
In July, Sabre Holdings acquires lastminute.com, Europe’s leading online travel site. The acquisition adds approximately 2,000 employees to the Travelocity business unit.
Zuji, the leading online travel agency in the Asia Pacific region, becomes a wholly owned brand of Travelocity.
In March, Sabre Holdings is acquired by Silver Lake and TPG.
In June 2007, Sabre Holdings acquires E-site Marketing, which will operate as a division of SynXis.
Sabre acquires Zenon NDC Limited from Cyprus Airways.
TIME Magazine named the Travelocity Roaming Gnome one of Top 10 Tiny Characters.
Sabre® Red™ Workspace won an Innovation Award at Business Travel & Meetings Show in the United Kingdom.
CEO Sam Gilliland is appointed to the U.S. President’s Management Advisory Board to advise the president and the President’s Management Council on best business practices.
Sabre Poland named “The Greatest Place to Work” by the Great Place to Work Institute.
Sabre launched Sabre Red Workspace — graphical view, an innovative feature of the Red Workspace that simplifies the shopping and booking process, allowing agents to book air, hotel, car and other suppliers
using a fully graphical workflow.
Sabre Hospitality Solutions launched SocialConversion, a product suite that enables hotels to better leverage social media.
Sabre Hospitality Solutions launched online reputation and social media monitoring solutions to its hotels around the world, giving the ability to increase guest satisfaction and drive revenue growth by
aggregating and managing online guest feedback.
Sabre Holdings acquired SoftHotel, the largest provider of web-based property management solutions for the hospitality industry.
Sabre Travel Network opened a new office in Bedfordview, Gauteng, South Africa, bringing choice, global experience, local knowledge, innovation and unmatched customer service to the marketplace.
Sabre Hospitality Solutions recognized for market-leading innovation at the Business Traveler Innovation Awards 2011.
Sabre launched Travelocity Dashing Deals, a daily offer that features different travel destinations at amazing deals until inventory runs out.
Sabre Travel Network launched Sabre® Profiles, an innovative customer profile management system that provides greater security, structure and control for agencies that use the Sabre Red Workspace.
Sabre Travel Network announced the Sabre® Red™ App Centre, the world’s first B2B travel app marketplace that connects travel buyers, including travel agencies, travel management companies and leisure operators, with third-party developers.
Sabre moved up to No. 31 on the InformationWeek 500 list, a rigorous quantitative and qualitative evaluation process that recognizes business technology vision and innovation as well as the execution of IT practices from companies across the United States.