IATA Teams with IBM to Develop Central E-Ticket System for Airline Industry

Agreement to Expand Paperless Travel Around The Globe

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August 11 - 11 Aug 1999: . . . The International Air Transport Association (IATA) and IBM today announced their commitment to develop a service capable of linking the e-ticket systems of hundreds of airlines around the world. The new service, built on industry standards, is expected to expand significantly the acceptance and use of e-ticketing among IATA's 266 Member airlines and the industry as a whole.

This new industry solution will allow participants to link to a centralized e-ticket service to process and exchange e-tickets. Travelers using e-tickets will then have the flexibility to fly, and if necessary rebook, on more than one airline on the same trip. This cannot be done today -- unless the e-tickets are issued by one of the few carriers with existing reciprocal agreements.

Those participants in the system without e-ticketing capability also may opt to use the new centralized service as a host system to create, store and process e-tickets, eliminating the need to develop and maintain their own proprietary e-ticket facilities.

"Airlines are realizing significant cost savings by implementing e-ticketing, with some airlines reporting large savings over their standard paper ticket costs," says Tom Murphy, Managing Director, IATA Distribution Services. "Through IATA, the industry will derive great benefit from IBM's reputation and expertise in e-ticketing, helping us to deliver a global service to passengers."

"This new service will mark another e-business milestone for the airline industry," says Greg Conley, General Manager, IBM Global Travel & Transportation. "It will enable airlines to connect to a centralized e-ticket service by developing a single, simple interface -- a much more efficient process than the current one requiring airlines to establish reciprocal electronic links with one another."

More information on IATA can be found at http://www.iata.org

More information on IBM Global Travel & Transportation Industry Solutions can be found at: http://www.ibm.com/solutions/travel

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