Sabre Figures Show E-Ticketing Acceleration

SOUTHLAKE, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–June 6, 2006–Sabre Travel Network and Sabre Airline Solutions have issued electronic ticketing updates for their businesses. Eighty percent of all tickets issued worldwide through the Sabre global distribution system (GDS) are now electronic, and 122 airlines offer e-ticketing for Sabre Connected travel agencies. Meanwhile, 57 airlines are now using the SabreSonic Ticket Interline Electronic Ticketing Hub (IET Hub) to facilitate e-ticketing with partner carriers.

IATA’s “Simplifying the Business” strategy calls for 100 percent e-ticketing by the end of 2007. Collectively, Sabre Travel Network airline customers broke through the 80 percent barrier in March, meaning that now only one in five tickets issued through the Sabre GDS is paper.

South African Airways, PIA, Gulf Air, Air Malta, Cyprus Airways, Malev Hungarian Airlines, Air Europa, Portugalia and SpanAir have become the latest carriers to implement e-ticketing through the Sabre GDS. Sabre Travel Network has now released e-ticketing in 72 countries, including 29 in the EMEA area. Cyprus, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Lebanon and Egypt are the latest additions.

“The travel agents I’ve spoken to are completely supportive of the full adoption of e-ticketing,” said Dean Bibb, Sabre Travel Network European vice-president of supplier relations and joint ventures. “Part of the reason we’ve broken through the 80 percent barrier is because our agency customers have seized on the e-ticketing capability of every new airline we’ve implemented.”

Sabre Airline Solutions has an e-ticketing enabling product for airlines called SabreSonic Ticket. This is part of the “new generation” SabreSonic Passenger Solutions and is based on open technology that allows communication with any airline’s own IT system. It lets an airline distribute electronic tickets both through its own sales channels and through travel agencies, check in passengers with electronic tickets and issue interline electronic tickets (IETs).

Sabre Airline Solutions now has 57 airlines connected to its IET Hub allowing each to issue e-tickets in conjunction with other participating carriers without having to create bilateral agreements and a special connection. IET Hub-connected carriers include British Airways, KLM, Cathay Pacific, Qantas, American Airlines, United, US Airways and Northwest Airlines.

Any airline can use the IET Hub, regardless of where its reservation system is hosted. The business also recently announced a technical development with Worldspan, giving carriers who use the IET Hub a single connection to those who use the Worldspan hub. This arrangement eliminates the need for complex, distinct communication layers between airlines that use the two hubs.

Sabre Airline Solutions currently hosts the reservations systems of over 100 airlines around the world, including Aerolineas Argentinas, Aeroflot, American Airlines, Gulf Air, Jet Airways, Pakistan International Airlines and Southwest Airlines. Nearly 50 carriers are using SabreSonic Ticket to issue e-tickets through their own sales channels. Nearly 40 are using the product to issue e-tickets through the travel agency channel, via GDSs.

“It’s highly unlikely that the IATA 2007 deadline for the complete withdrawal of paper ticketing will be met entirely,” said Nejib Ben-Khedher, president and managing partner of the aviation consulting practice at Sabre Airline Solutions. “However, the figures we are releasing today show an unstoppable momentum and indicate that carriers that sell most of the world’s airline tickets will be compliant by the due date.”

Ben-Khedher said the technology was available to help carriers of any size switch to e-ticketing quickly and relatively inexpensively.

“It’s not a huge exercise – developments such as SabreSonic Ticket have smoothed the process significantly and will take care of the e-ticketing needs of any carrier, regardless of size and where the airline’s reservations system is actually hosted.”

About Sabre Travel Network and Sabre Airline Solutions

Sabre Travel Network, a Sabre Holdings company, provides access to the world’s leading global distribution system (GDS). The Sabre GDS is a ready-built efficient marketplace that connects suppliers, including hundreds of airlines and thousands of hotels, with more than 50,000 travel agency locations. Suppliers get access through one single connection; travel agents get real time access to thousands of travel products from multiple suppliers through one source integrated into their businesses; consumers get access to a global supermarket of the world’s greatest travel possibilities.

Key brands of Sabre Travel Network include GetThere, the leading Web-based corporate travel reservation technology, and Jurni Network, the unique leisure travel agency consortium in the United States that enables members to sell more products from preferred travel suppliers using sophisticated market intelligence.

Sabre Airline Solutions, a Sabre Holdings company, is the world’s largest provider of products to help airlines market, sell, serve and operate from planning to execution.

More than 200 airlines use its broad portfolio of decision-support tools to increase revenues and improve operations, while more than 500 use its leading operational technology. More than 100 airlines rely on Sabre Airline Solutions for passenger management solutions, while a similar number have turned to the company’s consulting group for strategic, commercial and operational advice.

Sabre Airline Solutions, the Sabre Airline Solutions logo, SabreSonic and Sabre Travel Network are trademarks and/or service marks of an affiliate of Sabre Holdings Corp. All other trademarks, service marks and trade names are the property of their respective owners. (C) 2005 Sabre Inc. All rights reserved.

Sabre Holdings (NYSE:TSG) connects people with the world’s greatest travel possibilities by retailing travel products and providing distribution and technology solutions for the travel industry. More information about Sabre Holdings is available at

    CONTACT: Sabre Airline Solutions, Southlake
             Media Contact:
             Rebecca Hauger, 682-605-4098

    SOURCE: Sabre Airline Solutions