Categories: Special ReportAir Travel

Change in the Air: NDC By the Numbers

A different shopping and buying technology can deliver new dimensions in air travel data
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

That may have been the prevailing logic at one time with the travel industry’s EDIFACT messaging system. But in recent years, the limitations of a legacy system in a web-based world have become increasingly apparent. Thus we’ve seen development of the XML-based New Distribution Capabilities standard, which since its first steps of implementation in 2015 has seen growing levels of usage.

As this transition occurs, long-standing GDS relationships to corporate travel programs are shifting in new directions. With processes becoming more like retail travel buying, travel executives face both opportunities and challenges in leveraging this new way of buying.

“As NDC transactions have the capability of a tremendous amount of data in a usable format, we see that NDC will enable new opportunities for all parties,” says Graham Wareham, head of NDC and partnerships at ATPCO (Airline Tariff Publishing Company). “It’s still early and not yet clear how this will impact things like data acquisition, analytics, and setting and negotiation of fares between the airlines, TMCs, and corporations. But increasing NDC impact in these areas seems inevitable.

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