SOUTHLAKE, Texas–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Aug. 24, 2004–Sabre Travel
Network, a Sabre Holdings company (NYSE:TSG), today announced that it
is instituting a new policy for any airline participating in the
direct-connect availability (DCA) three-year program which charges a
fee on tickets issued through Sabre that is not also applied to the
airline’s own website. The policy goes into effect today for Northwest
Airlines in response to its announcement today imposing new ticketing
fees on all domestic tickets issued through U.S. and Canadian travel
agencies using a global distribution system (GDS).
Sabre has concluded such behavior is contrary to the letter and
the spirit of the DCA 3 agreements.
“We are taking proactive measures to protect consumers from hidden
and selective fare increases. And we are standing up for online and
offline travel agents, who have long-provided great service to
consumers and corporations,” said John Stow, president of Sabre Travel
Under the new policy, Sabre will take a series of actions
applicable to any airline not honoring its commitment to provide fare
parity for Sabre users. Initial actions include:
-- Ensuring more prominent display for those carriers providing the full complement of fares as required under the agreement; -- Discontinuing access to system data and tools enjoyed by other DCA 3 participants; and -- Withholding a portion of the discounts available under the DCA 3 program.
“The Sabre DCA 3 program was introduced in late 2002 and was
applauded by the travel industry for its role in eliminating fare
confusion in the marketplace. It is unfortunate that Northwest
Airlines is attempting to reintroduce that confusion; it is
anti-consumer and anti-travel agent,” Stow said.
Northwest Airlines signed the DCA Three-Year Option in July of
2003. The agreement guarantees Sabre Holdings access to all published
fares, promotions and services of a participating airline. This
includes all fares that the airline sells through any third-party Web
site and through its own Web site and reservation offices.
Additionally, the airline agreed to provide equal opportunities for
Sabre connected agents to have access to promotions that the airline
may make available through other channels, including competing
reservation systems and third-party Web sites.
About Sabre Travel Network
Sabre Travel Network, a Sabre Holdings company, provides access to
the world’s leading global distribution system (GDS) enabling agents
at more than 53,000 agency locations worldwide to be travel experts.
The Sabre GDS, the first system to connect the buyers and sellers of
travel, today includes more than 400 airlines, approximately 60,000
hotels, 37 car rental companies, nine cruise lines, 35 railroads and
220 tour operators. 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 that enables members to sell more products from preferred
travel suppliers using sophisticated market intelligence.
Sabre Holdings Corporation (NYSE:TSG) is a world leader in travel
commerce, retailing travel products and providing distribution and
technology solutions for the travel industry. More information about
Sabre Holdings is available at http://www.sabre-holdings.com.
Statements in this release which are not purely historical facts
or which necessarily depend upon future events, including statements
about future plans, the expected effects of the new policy outlined in
this release or other statements about anticipations, beliefs,
expectations, hopes, intentions or strategies for the future, may be
forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Readers are cautioned not
to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. All
forward-looking statements are based upon information available to
Sabre Holdings Corporation on the date this report was submitted.
Sabre Holdings Corporation undertakes no obligation to publicly update
or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new
information, future events or otherwise. Any forward-looking
statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual
events or results to differ materially from the events or results
described in the forward-looking statements, including risks or
uncertainties related to structural changes within the travel
industry, such as travel suppliers seeking alternative distribution
models, or Sabre Holdings Corporation’s revenues being highly
dependent on the travel and transportation industries. Sabre Holdings
Corporation may not succeed in addressing these and other risks.
Further information regarding factors that could affect our financial
and other results can be found in the risk factors section of Sabre
Holdings Corporation’s most recent filing on Form 10-Q with the
Securities and Exchange Commission.
CONTACT: Sabre Holdings Corporation, Southlake Michael Berman, 682-605-2397 or Investor Relations: Karen Fugate, 682-605-2343 SOURCE: Sabre Travel Network