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AA Could Pull Tickets From Orbitz  
User currently offlineOzarkD9S From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 4879 posts, RR: 22
Posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 4 days ago) and read 6571 times:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20101104/...i_ge/us_american_airlines_orbitz_2

Seems AA's having issues with Orbitz's information gathering resources and wants a tighter reign on those matters. They'll probably come to some sort of deal, if not AA is the one US carrier that can ill afford to lose even marginal revenue with their cost structure.

I haven't booked on Orbitz, but I do utilize their site to compare fares from time to time. If I did see a good deal on AA through them I wouldn't hestitate to book it. AA's loss if they don't work this out.


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16 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently onlineCubsrule From United States of America, joined May 2004, 22314 posts, RR: 20
Reply 1, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 20 hours ago) and read 6049 times:

Quoting OzarkD9S (Thread starter):
If I did see a good deal on AA through them I wouldn't hestitate to book it.

Isn't (or wasn't) the whole point of Orbitz that the "good deals" are the exact same ones available on airline websites collected in one place?



I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
User currently offlineDl767captain From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 2539 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 19 hours ago) and read 6022 times:

I honestly only use orbitz to compare a group of airlines to find the best price. A British airways flight was actually cheaper booking through BA.com. I have however found multicity trips cheaper on orbitz since it puts multiple airlines together

User currently offlineOzarkD9S From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 4879 posts, RR: 22
Reply 3, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 15 hours ago) and read 5541 times:

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 1):


Isn't (or wasn't) the whole point of Orbitz that the "good deals" are the exact same ones available on airline websites collected in one place?

Yes, but I have seen some roundabout itineraries offered thru Orbitz (and others) that weren't listed on the individual airline websites, usually involving and extra connection or multiple (unaligned) carriers. Every once in awhile you can find a super cheap offering if you're willing to double connect or switch airlines enroute.



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User currently offlinedavescj From United States of America, joined Jun 2007, 2292 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 3 days 14 hours ago) and read 5407 times:

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 1):
Isn't (or wasn't) the whole point of Orbitz that the "good deals" are the exact same ones available on airline websites collected in one place?
Quoting Dl767captain (Reply 2):
I honestly only use orbitz to compare a group of airlines to find the best price. A British airways flight was actually cheaper booking through BA.com. I have however found multicity trips cheaper on orbitz since it puts multiple airlines together

I would say both these statements are true. I almost always start at my preferred carrier (DL) or use orbitz for a price compare. Orbitz does much more multi-city and multi-carrier gymnastics than many other sites (esp airline websites). Orbitz also allows you to pair depatures and arrivals, if time is your over riding concern (as opposed to price) even from among different companies.

I am surprised AA would leave Orbitz. But then Southwest doesn't use them either. Maybe they know something I do not.

Dave



Can I have a mojito on this flight?
User currently offlineexFATboy From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2974 posts, RR: 9
Reply 5, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 20 hours ago) and read 3032 times:

I think AA is just considering another way to drive traffic toward their website rather than see that business go through online agencies, similar to their spat with Kayak a while back that led to restrictions on how AA flights are displayed on Kayak - AA flights only direct a purchaser to AA's website, not to Orbitz, Expedia, etc. This also means Kayak won't display routings that mix AA flights with other carriers', even if the routings would come up on Orbitz itself. AA could be losing business from this policy, but apparently they've decided the benefit of driving customers to their website outweigh any marginal loss of business.

It could just be a cost reduction issue, as AA claims, but if so why aren't they threatening to pull their tickets off Expedia and Travelocity as well, or do those services retrieve information directly from AA rather than the GDS?

Or it could be a ploy to get those fees reduced, since Orbitz is half-owned by Travelport, the parent of Worldspan and Galileo.

Quoting davescj (Reply 4):
But then Southwest doesn't use them either. Maybe they know something I do not.

Southwest knows they aren't always the cheapest on any given trip, so they deliberately make it harder for customers to compare their fares to other carriers', by not participating in on-line travel agencies or allowing their fares to be displayed on non-agency search engines like Kayak or Hipmunk.

Not participating in the online agencies is admittedly also a way to reduce expenses by avoiding agency fees, but the search engine suppression is simply to make comparisons harder - WN could feed Kayak directly from their own systems, costing them effectively nothing, and Kayak users would get sent to Southwest.com to buy, just as they do with AA. At least WN is allowing their schedules to be displayed on Kayak so users know to go look on WN's website, they used to not even allow that.


User currently onlineCubsrule From United States of America, joined May 2004, 22314 posts, RR: 20
Reply 6, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 19 hours ago) and read 2928 times:

Quoting davescj (Reply 4):
I am surprised AA would leave Orbitz. But then Southwest doesn't use them either. Maybe they know something I do not.

Honestly, on most of my travel (and practically all of my business travel), I don't use Orbitz or any other site and I don't really comparison shop. Why? If I fly a route a lot, I know who is cheapest and whose schedules work best, and I don't need any website to tell me that if my return time is up in the air, I need to fly WN so I can change the ticket. I think it's a lot easier for WN to be off of Orbitz, etc. than it would be for AA because WN has a more distinctive product (no change fees, no 1st or 2nd bag fee, all mainline, more of a p2p model, etc.). If I'm going to fly CHI-BNA, for instance, I'm going to pick WN versus AA/UA based on those things and MDW versus ORD. But how do I pick between AA and UA? Unless I'm Elite on one or the other, it's going to be price.



I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
User currently offlineAirNZ From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 2888 times:

Quoting OzarkD9S (Thread starter):
if not AA is the one US carrier that can ill afford to lose even marginal revenue with their cost structure.

How can you equate revenue from Orbitz ticket sales as 'marginal'? You've surely got to be joking with that!

Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 1):
Isn't (or wasn't) the whole point of Orbitz that the "good deals" are the exact same ones available on airline websites collected in one place?

Nope, there are many other factors in play.


User currently offlinefrmrCapCadet From United States of America, joined May 2008, 1690 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 2856 times:

I was told today that WN uses Orbitz for their hotels. When I checked prices for a flight and a week in downtown Chicago it all was pretty comparable.


Buffet: the airline business...has eaten up capital...like..no other (business)
User currently offlineairbazar From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 7874 posts, RR: 10
Reply 9, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 2832 times:

I started using Orbitz when it was first launched and never looked back. It's a lot more convenient than jumping from airline site to airline site comparing fares and schedules. I especially like the ability to mix and match different airlines that you can't get from booking on a single carrier. And Orbitz customer service is a lot better than any legacy carrier's customer service will ever be, and you can't beat their lowest price guarantee which no airline will have give you.

User currently offlineLJ From Netherlands, joined Nov 1999, 4367 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 2808 times:

Quoting exFATboy (Reply 5):

Southwest knows they aren't always the cheapest on any given trip, so they deliberately make it harder for customers to compare their fares to other carriers', by not participating in on-line travel agencies or allowing their fares to be displayed on non-agency search engines like Kayak or Hipmunk.

This is something you see more often now that internet has created transparency in certain markets. The companies don't like it and do their best to reduce transparency.....

Odly, the airlines (who want to reduce bookings via a travel agent) give more reasons to go to a travel agent. At present I do my booking entirely via internet, but if sites like Orbitz aren't allowed to offer these kind of fares (and sometimes very interesting routings), the added value of the internet diminishes.

Quoting exFATboy (Reply 5):

It could just be a cost reduction issue, as AA claims, but if so why aren't they threatening to pull their tickets off Expedia and Travelocity as well, or do those services retrieve information directly from AA rather than the GDS?

I don't have any experience for domestic US flights, but on my travels from Amsterdam to Latin America, I found Orbitz much more creative than Travelocity and Expedia (and the latter much more expensive than any other site I know). They provide me with much more options and I end up booking with them most of the time.


User currently offlineexFATboy From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2974 posts, RR: 9
Reply 11, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 18 hours ago) and read 2802 times:

Quoting AirNZ (Reply 7):
How can you equate revenue from Orbitz ticket sales as 'marginal'? You've surely got to be joking with that!

The "marginal" would only be the loss of customers who are only looking on Orbitz - they aren't checking on any other on-line agent (Expedia, Travelocity), search engine (Kayak, Hipmunk, Sidestep, etc.), and wouldn't go check on AA's website directly. AA could be figuring this is a very small, yet relatively expensive to serve and low-yield, market segment.

They might have a case here - I don't know of that many people who only use one search method when they're looking for tickets, at least not unless it's for a trip they're very familiar with. I only look on Kayak for trips between NYC and Florida destinations, but that's 'cause I've flown to TPA, SRQ, MCO, FLL, and MIA dozens of times in the last few years and have a pretty good idea of what range the fares should be in. Otherwise, I use Kayak and at least one other source, usually Orbitz, and unless I'm buying a multi-carrier ticket always book with the airline directly, getting a final price check.

(When WN expands to EWR and finishes the AirTran acquisition and assimilation, I guess I'll have to start checking their site too.)

Or AA could want just what they're saying they want, for Orbitz to get data directly from them rather than the GDS systems, and the "pull" threat is just a bargaining ploy.


User currently offlineFWAERJ From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 3641 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 17 hours ago) and read 2732 times:

Travelport just sued AA to stop them from pulling tickets from Orbitz:

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-1...-from-ending-orbitz-ticketing.html



I don't work for FWA, their tenants, or their ad agency. But I still love FWA.
User currently offlineOzarkD9S From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 4879 posts, RR: 22
Reply 13, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 16 hours ago) and read 2630 times:

Quoting AirNZ (Reply 7):


How can you equate revenue from Orbitz ticket sales as 'marginal'? You've surely got to be joking with that!

Not joking at all. I have no idea what % of AA's revenues are booked through Orbitz, and would assume that information is not general knowledge though of course I could be wrong. However, disregarding us A-net travel geeks I would probably be correct in assuming a good chunk of people are using Orbitz and others to find the "cheapest" fare possible. How many F and C pax book through Orbitz on AA? Again I have no idea, but AA does and might feel its worth the lost revenue to get a tighter grip on their own bookings. But with AA's spotty quarterly results, while others are raking in profits, it makes me wonder if AA can afford to lose ANY revenue right now.



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User currently offlineFWAERJ From United States of America, joined Jun 2006, 3641 posts, RR: 2
Reply 14, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 2572 times:

Keep in mind that Orbitz Worldwide also owns CheapTickets.com, Trip.com (a comparison site a la Kayak), and many other travel sites in addition to Orbitz.com.

If AA pulls schedules and flights from Orbitz as of 12/1, it will likely affect all Orbitz-owned sites.



I don't work for FWA, their tenants, or their ad agency. But I still love FWA.
User currently offlineairportugal310 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 3451 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 2513 times:

Quoting FWAERJ (Reply 12):
Travelport just sued AA to stop them from pulling tickets from Orbitz:

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-1...-from-ending-orbitz-ticketing.html

Almost seem like something you might see on an episode of Mad Men...

But seriously, I am sure AA's legal team reviewed the contract. Of course that hasn't ever stopped anyone from suing before, but it might just be to buy Travelport some time...

This line from the Bloomberg report:

"Travelport, whose affiliate owns 48 percent of Orbitz’s stock, would suffer substantial harm if American stops providing fare data to Orbitz...

is not AA's problem?  



hit it and quit it
User currently offlineairbazar From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 7874 posts, RR: 10
Reply 16, posted (3 years 5 months 2 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 2406 times:

Quoting exFATboy (Reply 11):
They might have a case here - I don't know of that many people who only use one search method

Me. Like I said above, I only use Orbitz and hardly ever bother wasting my time looking anywhere else. The assumption is that if it's not on Orbitz it's not anywhere else since all sites get their data from the same place. And even if an airline site may have a slightly cheaper fare (which almost never happens), the difference is not going to be significant enough to make it worth my time.
My wife is a travel agent with access to cheaper, negotiated agent [net] rates from the airlines (those that still do that), and those fares are never significantly different than what I can find on Orbitz.


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