Travel Distributors and GDSs unite to create European industry body for travel intermediaries

The European Technology & Travel Services Association (ETTSA) was launched last week by a number of Europe’s leading travel intermediaries.

The association seeks to encourage and support fair competition and secure real consumer choice in the travel distribution chain. Its members consist of Global Distribution Systems (GDS) and travel distributors in Europe including ebookers, one of Europe’s largest online travel agents.

ETTSA’s mission is to raise awareness of the benefits provided to consumers by travel distributors and technology providers when planning and booking business and holiday travel.

Through working with consumers, policymakers and other members of the travel value chain ETTSA seeks to ensure that the role and market realities of travel distributors and technology providers are properly understood.

Currently the focus of ETTSA’s activities includes the following priorities:

* Measures introduced by airlines to prevent online travel agencies from making price comparisons;
* The implementation of the new code of conduct for Computerised Reservation Systems (CRS); and
* Airlines’ abusive (Preferred) fares and surcharge schemes.

Tomas Lopez Fernebrand, vice president and chief legal officer of the Amadeus Group, was elected ETTSA chairman after the first general assembly of the association.

Commenting on ETTSA’s launch, Lopez Fernebrand said: “In providing technology and services that encourage transparency, choice and value, travel distributors and technology providers play a vital role in the travel distribution chain.

ETTSA’s aim is to ensure that the role of travel distributors and technology providers and the benefits they bring to consumers are more widely recognized and understood. Our task is to promote transparency, fair competition and consumer choice in travel distribution.”

ETTSA’s members include Amadeus, ebookers, Expedia, Opodo, Sabre (including its affiliate and Travelport. Affiliated members include 

ETTSA welcomes new members to the association that are actively involved and add value to the travel distribution chain.

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