Any time a country or region imposes any sort of visa stipulation - even if it’s a waiver - the travel industry sighs a collective groan, knowing the obstacles and headaches to come.
COLOGNE — Starting Dec. 1, the Lufthansa Group’s Economy Light European fares on Austrian Airlines, Lufthansa and SWISS will only be available via NDC and direct channels.
The news comes three years after Lufthansa started issuing a €16 Distribution Cost Charge on bookings made via GDS.
This latest initiative, says the Group, is designed to drive adoption of NDC technology.
“Our goal today, as well as when we introduced NDC three years ago, is to pave the way to a more powerful, innovative and cost-efficient distribution landscape,” said Andreas Koester, senior sales director for the UK, Ireland and Iceland at a recent press event. “This is of the utmost importance because the travellers of today and tomorrow expect to receive airline content in the same easy, digital and transparent way that they are already used to in other parts of their life. Our objective is to ensure that our customers experience Lufthansa Group’s premium airline promise at any own and third-party purchase points.”
As of Dec. 1, Economy Light fares will no longer be available in GDS, but can still be accessed via Lufthansa Group airlines Direct NDC API, SPRK, Austrian.com, lufuthansa.com, swiss.com and lhgroup-agent.com.