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Frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the GDS
How and when did they come about?
The aviation industry developed the first GDS in the 1960s to track flight schedules, availabilities and prices. GDS were among the first e-commerce companies in the world and enabled B2B e-commerce back in the mid-1970s when SABER (owned by American Airlines) and Apollo (United) began installing their own in-house booking systems in travel agencies .
Previously, travel agencies spent a disproportionate amount of time entering the bookings, price lists and routes they took from the airlines' printed price lists. The airlines realized that automating the booking process for travel agencies could make them more productive, making them an extension of their sales team. It is precisely these initial GDS that form the basis of the online travel distribution system today.
The currently most important GDS are:
- Worldspan and Dhisco (previously known as Pegasus)
What are you?
A GDS is another distribution channel from which a hotel can receive room reservations in addition to bookings received through the hotel website or online travel agents. The difference is that the people on the other end of the GDS are travel agents, consortia and large corporations rather than the general audience like other channels.
Although any type of hotel can be connected to the GDS, the channel is best for business hotels with premium locations, such as B. large cities with airports in which many large companies, exhibition centers and events and thus many business customers can be found. In fact, bookings via GDS mostly concern single rooms, short stays with limited room for maneuver and often several rooms.
How do they work?
The system requires user training. Travel agents need to learn the language of the GDS system in order to perform hotel searches and understand the results.
To give you an impression, the user interface on the travel agency's website is shown below:
This example shows the results of an availability search near a "reference point". The travel agency is looking for a hotel near a certain point of interest. In this case it is Tower Bridge in London. The results are listed depending on the distance to the point of interest. The distance is given in the DI column.
This screen shows the results of an availability search for a specific hotel. Here you can see the price for the first night, the total price for the stay including taxes, the name of the price, the technical description of the room, the equipment and the travel agency's commission.
On the hotelier's side, Vertical Booking integrates the GDS connection into the CRS, which is why the prices and availabilities in the GDS are updated together with all of their other channels. In any case, a technical approach is required to set up. If mistakes are made here, your hotel will not be included in the desired search results. Vertical Booking does, however, offer advice and help hotels optimize their technical approach and marketing strategies for GDS sales.
What are the possibilities for the hotelier?
The GDS represent an exclusive channel, i. H. there is no other way to access this specific and profitable customer base. GDS sales are responsible for a significant proportion of sales and profits in many hotels.
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