A recent discover made in the agency community uncovered how several major US airlines have made subtle fare structure changes which are resulting in huge ticket prices for the traveller.
In a press release today, April 6, 2016, from ASTA (The American Society of Travel Agents) outlines how several U.S.-based airlines, including American, Delta and United, recently made subtle changes to their domestic pricing structure resulting in not-so-subtle changes to the cost of some airfares, especially impacting the business traveller.
The American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) learned of this issue from its agent members who detected this change early, quickly began navigating through the complexities of fares and pricing and started saving their clients money.
“The simple way to explain what is happening is that certain multi-segment itineraries now cost a significantly higher amount when they are presented as a single ticket rather than multiple one-way tickets,” said ASTA President and CEO Zane Kerby. “The negative impact is on the time it takes agents to issue multiple tickets for one trip, but consumers who book multi city or circle trips through their trusted travel agent can experience significant savings.”
The changes were made to what the airlines call “combinable fare rules,” which prohibit certain one-way fares from being combined into the same passenger name record. For example, if a traveler needs to fly from New York to Los Angeles one day, from Los Angeles to Phoenix the next, and from Phoenix back home to New York, the price to ticket that all at once can be more than double the price of purchasing three separate one-way tickets.
To quantify, an ASTA agency owner told ASTA on Monday: “A test itinerary I did this morning on an AA circle trip showed the same ridiculously high fare display in the GDS, AA.com and Expedia. It cost roughly $1,800 for one ticket; only $450 for three tickets.”
To read the full press release please click here.