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Why Do Airlines Want You To Book Online?  
User currently offlineFunflyer From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 866 posts, RR: 0
Posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 5 days ago) and read 3773 times:

Did anyone else notice that most of the airlines want you to book online. And offer lower fares and bonus miles.
Airlines even want you to check-in buy yourself and offer more bonus miles.


Why do they want to limit interaction between you and there employees?




Who cares about status?
13 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineIkarus From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 3524 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3763 times:

Because their employees cost money. The less of them you need, the better for profits.

Easyjet now only ever accepts phone bookings for groups, I believe.


User currently offlineFunflyer From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 866 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3758 times:

Yes thats true but they pay there employees by the hour not the call so they still pay. Don't they?


Who cares about status?
User currently offlineElwood64151 From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 2477 posts, RR: 6
Reply 3, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3758 times:

That's because if you book online, they don't have to pay someone at the reservations center their little commission for selling seats. Further, if you use online or self-service checkin, they don't have to pay as many ticket-counter agents. Just one for every four check-in kiosks.

By the way: Don't use NW self-service check-in at EWR. I stood around for fifteen minutes waiting for them to take my checked luggage while others got ahead of me. Every time I spoke up, no one paid any attention.

CO at SEA, on the other hand, was precisely the opposite experience.



Those who fail to learn history are doomed to repeat it in summer school.
User currently offlineIkarus From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2001, 3524 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3748 times:

Funflyer: One of the things Easyjet did after taking over Go was firing most of their telephone sales staff. You need less staff if more people book online.

User currently offlineElwood64151 From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 2477 posts, RR: 6
Reply 5, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3740 times:

Yes thats true but they pay there employees by the hour not the call so they still pay. Don't they?

You're forgetting something: If they book 10% more seats after setting-up website sales, but now 40% of their tickets are booked via the web, then they can employ fewer people at the res center.

Same goes for check-in. They can process just as many passengers with fewer agents.



Those who fail to learn history are doomed to repeat it in summer school.
User currently offlineStevenUhl777 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3739 times:

Probably for a number of reasons:
- Most fliers have internet access and prefer doing as much online as possible, to make things simple.
- Fliers don't want to hassle with lines at check in, which is why they offer the easy check in machines.
- COST: cheaper for the airlines to have everything done online to save having to hire an employee
- So that you deal DIRECTLY with the airline, not through an intermediary that they have to pay commission to. This whole thing started when airlines decided to cut/eliminate travel agent commissions.
- So that frequent fliers don't have to wait on hold when making reservations

I'm sure there's many more!



User currently offlineLuv2fly From United States of America, joined May 2003, 12113 posts, RR: 49
Reply 7, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 3728 times:
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It is the trend of the times. They stopped paying travel agents commission so another cost savings, less res staff another cost savings, less res centers another cost savings, more self serve check in machines, more cost savings, boarding pass readers at the gates more cost savings, where and when will it end, it is here to stay.....


You can cut the irony with a knife
User currently offlineAA737-823 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 5845 posts, RR: 11
Reply 8, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 21 hours ago) and read 3635 times:

Southwest claims that it costs the company less than $1 to book a reservation online. On the other hand, it costs them $6 to comission a travel agent. Their telephone sales reps fall somewhere in between.

So- they save big money over at Southwest with their online bookings.

R


User currently offlineCmckeithen From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 617 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 3592 times:

CO is the best airline when it comes to serivce and low cost fares.

User currently offlineDoorsToManual From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 10, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 3577 times:

On the other hand, it costs them $6 to comission a travel agent

Why not cut the travel agents out altogether? I believe that's what Ryanair and easyjet have done, and it hasn't hurt sales at all.


User currently offlineFly727 From Mexico, joined Jul 2003, 1789 posts, RR: 19
Reply 11, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 3557 times:

As said many times above: It costs less money:

1. Reduced reservations staff
2. No commission to travel agencies
3. Reduced paperwork (they just issue a boarding pass. No ticket necessary).

Also.... They are also looking for new ways of advertising their services; as you provide an e-mail address when you book, most probably they will send you afterwards -a potential traveler- some specials.

Cmckeithen: I agree with you. Their website and fares are the best on-line.

RM



There are no stupid questions... just stupid people!
User currently offlineTekelberry From United States of America, joined May 2003, 1459 posts, RR: 4
Reply 12, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 3550 times:

CO is the best airline when it comes to serivce and low cost fares.

Aside from that being completely opinionated, that isn't relevant at all.


User currently offlineAirzim From Zimbabwe, joined Jun 2001, 1210 posts, RR: 1
Reply 13, posted (11 years 1 month 3 weeks 4 days 20 hours ago) and read 3540 times:

As others have stated above it is related to costs but the biggest one hasn't been mentioned yet, distribution costs.

On top of travel agent commissions, everytime you make a booking through one of the many world-wide GDS's there's a cost to the airline. It is generally in cents for each RPB-Revenue Passenger Boarded. Each of those costs add up to millions a year in distribution costs. If you make a web booking on www.ba.com the booking is made in the host system and it saves that penny.

The internet has also presented quite a few problems for airlines. In RES and GDS systems the airlines know where you are based on the IATA sign in of the agent. Airlines can bias availability for certain countries and not others if they want more revenue from a different station. With the internet that goes all away, no way of knowing that the passenger making a booking from LHR-CDG is in London, Paris, Sydney or Khartoum. That is scaring the crap out of them.


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