Sabre Airline Solutions
- Corporate Address
- Sabre Holdings Corp.
3150 Sabre Drive
Southlake, Texas 76092 USA
Phone: +1 682 605 1000
Founded in 1960, Sabre Airline Solutions is a leading provider of integrated solutions and services for airlines and airports. Sabre Airline Solutions helps companies generate more revenue by optimizing performance in 14 key areas of airline operations. More than 300 leading carriers and over 100 airports use Sabre Airline Solutions to better market their schedules, sell their products, serve their customers and operate efficiently.
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Airlines in Transition part 4: Bridging the gap between full service and low-cost or hybrid airlines
Our previous report on CAPA’s Airlines in Transition conference (Airlines in Transition part 3: How full service airlines are reshaping models to be more competitive) looked at how full service carriers are responding to the challenges of a weak global economy, high fuel prices and growing competition from LCCs on short-haul and Gulf carriers on long-haul. The low-cost sector is also going through a period of change, characterised by features summarised at the conference by Professor Rigas Doganis.
Like the FSCs, the LCC sector has seen concentration and consolidation and the two sectors have established a growing number of linkages. Moreover, the relaxation of the pure low-cost model of simplicity and the adoption by FSCs of LCC pricing strategies has narrowed the differences between them. Have the differences been eliminated? What are the challenges faced by LCCs/hybrids? What is the right number of fares to offer? We examine these questions and more in this fourth conference report.
With the expiration of the contract between Sabre and American Airlines now only 11 days away, the two remain locked in negotiations. American, however, now has another weapon: the right to gain an injunction against Sabre dropping it from its global distribution system (GDS). Earlier this month, a judge hearing the case said Sabre could not block a request for injunction.
The airline distribution war is entering a new phase, as American Airlines and Sabre initiate formal legal proceedings. This follows a series of duelling press releases and humourous American Airlines ads against Orbitz. On the sidelines - and soon to be more centrally important - Google’s flight search is attracting considerable attention.
Some would say it’s about time. It has been almost two years since American Senior Vice President Government Relations cast American and other airlines in the role of victims to what he termed the greatest duopoly ignored in antitrust investigations.
American has been preparing travel agents and its corporate clients for the contingency it will not be able to reach a new deal with Sabre and will pull its content with the GDS on 1 June, according to TNooz which reported Sabre’s response to travel agents Thursday. Meanwhile, American characterised its move as preparation for GDSs or Sabre making the first move to drop American content.
With the revelations from American Airlines’ earnings call as well as lawsuits, especially that filed against Sabre by US Airways on 21-Apr-2011, it may only be a matter of time before the great distribution battle is settled once and for all in the airlines’ favour. After all, the deals that have been cut by US Airways and American favour the direct connect strategy. Even so, those deals have largely between between the airlines and online travel agencies. The big test is now between airlines and global distribution systems. US Airways' move will only accelerate the industry-wide battle, with potentially wide-ranging repercussions. Although the conflict has so far been contained in the US, its principles will be watched closely by industry and regulators alike all around the world. The key issue is whether the airline industry can evolve from a mode of transportation to a retail business.
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