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Carlson Wagonlit Travel announces deal with British Airways and Iberia

CWT customers to avoid airlines' surcharge on participating distributors

Carlson Wagonlit Travel (CWT) has announced a multi-year distribution agreement with British Airways and Iberia Airlines to avoid global distribution systems (GDS) surcharges.

In May, International Airlines Group - the parent company of BA and IB - announced it would add a US$10 (£7.50) ‘distribution technology charge’ on each airline fare component of a booking, effective from 1 November 2017. A fare component is a portion of a journey, or itinerary, between two consecutive fare breaks, or legs so, for example, a round trip ticket typically contains two fare components and therefore would have an IAG surcharge of US$20 (£15).

The new agreement, effective from 1 November 2017, will enable CWT business travel and leisure clients to avoid the airlines' proposed surcharge on bookings created within participating GDS.

“This agreement further strengthens our long-standing partnership with BA and IB and highlights our mutual commitment to the concept of new distribution capabilities to drive improved product differentiation," said Brian Mogler, senior vice president, global supplier management, CWT. "While we believe GDS provide the best technology platform available for CWT to enable best-in-market user experience and operating efficiency, we will continue to monitor and assess new technologies and capabilities."

Ian Luck, head of distribution at British Airways, said: "We are delighted with this new agreement which will bring both immediate and longer term benefits. We are particularly pleased with the strong undertaking CWT has made to work collaboratively with us, GDS and other technology partners in delivering NDC content and other benefits to our customers."

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