Tension in the NDC journey: Complaint filed against American

by | Aug 15, 2023 | Airlines, Digital Transformation, News

Tension in the NDC journey: Complaint filed against American


The American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) filed a complaint with the US Department of Transportation (DOT) against American Airlines on 31st July. Accusing the airline of “unfair trade practice” ASTA have alleged American’s transition to NDC has “resulted in substantially higher air ticket prices for consumers and frustrated TMCs in fulfilling their duty of care to business travellers.”

ASTA have been joined by the UK Business Travel Association (BTA) in demanding the DOT restore full access to American Airlines air fares via global distribution systems (GDSs).

In response to the filing, American stated:

NDC is not some unproven technology. Many of the biggest names in travel distribution have been using NDC for years. Last year, one out of every three travel agency bookings on American have been made using NDC connections. All of the largest online travel agencies have been connected to American for years.

ASTA have been vocal in their criticism of American’s NDC transition before. Back in March, President and CEO, Zane Kerby denounced American’s decision saying:

“Beyond the unproven technology piece of the puzzle, processes that do not currently exist for servicing NDC bookings will need to be developed, tested, and implemented. The airlines have been working on NDC for over a decade, but this sudden bullying of valuable distribution partners into breakneck-speed implementation won’t serve our shared customers.”

American’s transition to NDC in April has caused ripples, with other airlines following suit. Perhaps unsurprisingly, this shift in the distribution landscape is causing tension.

Do you think this will slow down the journey to NDC?


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