Galileo and Air Canada announce technology breakthrough providing Galileo agents in Canada with desktop access to Air Canada's full range of products
First Merchandising Solution by a GDS to Support All Air Canada Fare and Flight Pass Products LANGLEY, U.K. and MONTREAL, Aug. 15 /CNW Telbec/ - Galileo, a leading global distribution system (GDS) and subsidiary of Travelport, and Air Canada today announced a multi-year agreement for a revolutionary graphical agency desktop solution that will provide Galileo-connected Canadian travel agents access to the full range and attributes of Air Canada's innovative à-la-carte fare products and Flight Passes. Air Canada will become the launch customer of the desktop solution, developed by Galileo and powered by Air Canada's direct-connect application programming interface (API) platform called "AC2U." Galileo plans to make their system available to travel agents in Canada in the fourth quarter of 2007. Galileo is the first and only GDS to offer a full merchandising solution capable of supporting the full range of Air Canada's fare and Flight Pass products. The new desktop solution offers Galileo agencies full product descriptions, the ease of a graphical display and prompts the user when product options are available. All information is seamlessly integrated into the travel agent accounting and back-office systems. "Galileo is embracing new ways to do business and we are especially pleased to partner with Air Canada, an innovative and forward-thinking carrier, as our launch customer for this new solution," said Dave Falter, president, Galileo Americas. Added Jean Collier, vice president, Supplier Services, Galileo Americas, "As airlines around the world roll-out a variety of non-traditional optional services, it is critical to provide carriers and their customers with merchandising tools to sell these services. At the same time, it is important to protect an airline's brand integrity and to merchandise products as they would via their own distribution channels." Commented Air Canada's Vice President, Sales and Product Distribution, Marc Rosenberg, "Today's announcement marks the successful outcome of many months of close collaboration with Galileo to develop a robust, user-friendly solution that meets Air Canada's merchandising requirements. We are satisfied that Galileo subscribers in Canada will soon have a powerful, automated tool that will help them enhance productivity and customer service, by offering the full range of Air Canada product features." The new desktop solution will enable Galileo subscribers to shop, price and book all Air Canada domestic, U.S. transborder and international itineraries and fares including Tango, Tango Plus, Latitude, Latitude Plus and Executive, as well as the capability to book using Air Canada's complete range of Flight Pass products. The new desktop was initially developed to meet the needs of Air Canada, the world's first network carrier to offer its customers à-la-carte pricing with the ability to choose among product attributes they wish to pay for, such as advance seat assignment on its lowest Tango fare, onboard meals and lounge access, or opt out of to obtain a discount such as checked baggage, refund-ability and frequent flyer mile accumulation. In addition, Air Canada is the only airline that offers customers Flight Passes providing the convenience to pre-purchase air travel in bulk, either in the form of banks of flight credits or fixed monthly subscription rates that allow for unlimited flights. Flight passes, available in single and multi-user versions, are popular with leisure and corporate clients who appreciate online booking convenience and the price predictability of a single or fixed all-inclusive payments. About Galileo Galileo is a global technology leader. Its core business is providing electronic global distribution services for the travel industry through its computerized reservation systems, leading-edge products and innovative, Internet-based solutions. Galileo is a value-added distributor of travel inventory dedicated to supporting its travel supplier, agency and corporate customers and, through them, expanding traveler choice. Galileo, a Travelport brand, is headquartered in Langley, UK and has offices worldwide. Visit www.galileo.com. About Travelport Travelport operates Galileo, a global distribution system (GDS) and GTA, a wholesaler of travel content. In addition, it also owns a controlling interest in Orbitz Worldwide, a leading, global online travel company. With 2006 revenues of $2.6 billion, Travelport has approximately 6000 employees and operates in 130 countries. Travelport is a private company owned by The Blackstone Group of New York, Technology Crossover Ventures of Palo Alto, California and One Equity Partners of New York. About Air Canada Air Canada's achievements have been honoured recently by consumers and the industry. This year, Washington D.C.-based Air Transport World, gave Air Canada the magazine's Market Leadership Award based on the airline's success in implementing an innovative and transparent pricing structure, its use of online technology to meet consumers' needs and its fleet-wide renewal with a consistent, market-leading onboard product among North American airlines. In 2007, Air Canada was also ranked "Best Airline in North America" for the second time in three years in a independent passenger survey of 14 million air travellers conducted by Skytrax. In addition, Air Canada was named favourite carrier by Canadian travel agents in a survey of travel agents conducted by Baxter Travel Media. Montreal-based Air Canada provides scheduled and charter air transportation for passengers and cargo to more than 170 destinations on five continents. Canada's flag carrier is the 14th largest commercial airline in the world and serves 32 million customers annually with a fleet consisting of 335 aircraft. Air Canada is a founding member of Star Alliance, providing the world's most comprehensive air transportation network.
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For further information: Media inquiries: Galileo: Jill Brenner, Galileo Americas, 973.939.1325, Jill.firstname.lastname@example.org; Air Canada: Isabelle Arthur (Montréal), (514) 422-5788; Peter Fitzpatrick (Toronto),(416) 263-5576; Angela Mah (Vancouver), (604) 270-5741; aircanada.com