Don’t expect Delta to follow Lufthansa’s lead in charging consumers and travel agents a surcharge for bookings that occur outside the airline’s websites and call centers.
Asked about Lufthansa’s upcoming 16 euro ($17.76) surcharge for bookings that go through the global distribution systems which power online travel agency websites, Delta president Edward Bastian said Delta has been able to significantly lower its distribution costs over the last five years.
Among the actions that Delta has taken over the last few years, the airline has dropped out of several lesser-known websites, as well as TripAdvisor, Hipmunk and CheapOair.com presumably because the carrier wasn’t getting the returns that it expected.
In addition, Bastian said airline distribution costs in Europe are generally higher than they are in the U.S., implying that Delta doesn’t have the same distribution-cost issues as Lufthansa.
He added that Delta has a good relationship with its global distribution system partners. The major global distribution system companies include Amadeus, Sabre and Travelport.
In fact, Delta, Northwest and TWA created the Worldspan global distribution system in 1990. It was acquired by Travelport in 2007.
Bastian’s comments about Lufthansa came June 4 at the Deutsche Bank Global Industrials and Basic Materials Conference in Chicago.