SpiceJet is revamping its ticket distribution as it expands its international network. On Wednesday the airline tied up with Amadeus, a global distribution system service provider, giving global travel agents access to its ticket inventory.
Passengers, however, will have to pay a surcharge for tickets issued through Amadeus. The airline has not announced the surcharge, but sources said it may range from $10-15 per ticket. There will be no additional fee for tickets booked through other modes. SpiceJet has announced new international flights to Colombo and Jeddah from Hyderabad and plans to open up new routes in China, Central Asia and Russia.
Global distribution systems or GDS refers to travel reservation tools used by travel agents around the world to make bookings. Typically the service provider collects a segment fee for every booking from the airline and shares it with travel agents. This increases costs for carriers.
Globally airlines such as British Airways and Lufthansa collect a fee from passengers for tickets booked through GDS in order to reduce their costs. SpiceJet is following suit.
While the deal allows SpiceJet to widen its global reach, it would help Amadeus win back some business after having lost Air India and Jet Airways contracts to rival Travelport. IndiGo also sells its inventory through Travelport. Industry sources however do not see domestic bookings shifting to Amadeus given the proposed surcharge.
"SpiceJet is working with a distribution partner to reach out to travelers across the globe. By connecting to travellers through the world's largest community of travel sellers and buyers, the airline will be able to showcase its products on a global scale, access new markets and partners and grow its customer base," the airline said in a statement. The airline said its entire ticket inventory will continue to be available to domestic travellers through existing channels as well as Amadeus with a different pricing model.
"SpiceJet is in the midst of its most exciting growth phase and I am sure that this new distribution network will enable a large number of customers to connect with our huge domestic and growing international network," chairman Ajay Singh said.
The airline did not respond to an email query on the topic.
In 2016 SpiceJet tied up German firm Hahn Air to expand its sales reach overseas. The tie up enabled agents to sell SpiceJet tickets through GDS but there was no direct partnership between the airline and GDS.
Cyril Tetaz, Executive Vice President, Airlines, Amadeus, Asia Pacific said, “With our partnership including distribution and IT solutions, we are very proud to support SpiceJet in its growth in India and beyond. Spice Jet will be able to differentiate its offers and empower travelers with the transparency and customization they need through our global travel network."