It has been slow going for airlines to make good on commitments to enable Concur TripLink connections for bookings made on their direct websites, but a couple are gearing up to launch.
U.K.-based Business Travel Direct has become the first travel management company to participate in Traxo Marketplace, which integrates travel data aggregator Traxo with other service providers to manage off-channel bookings.
Business Travel Direct parent Ickenham Travel Group has launched subsidiary Infiniti Travel & Consulting to act as a tech reseller and consultant to other TMCs.
Delta in the next month plans to become Level 3 certified under the International Air Transport Association's New Distribution Capability program, joining some of the largest airlines in the world in reaching the milestone, including competitors American Airlines and United Airlines.
Following some delays, United Airlines expects to start beta testing its direct integration of Concur's TripLink with select corporate clients by July. A Concur official said United would be the first airline to go live with supplier-direct TripLink integration, joining other suppliers like major hotel operators that are already in action.
Concur has established its own direct connections to a few airlines so bookers can access content not readily available through global distribution systems. However, the SAP-owned T&E giant now is leaning on aggregator Travelfusion to hook up with carriers using the International Air Transport Association's New Distribution Capability standard, Concur SVP of supplier services Charlie Sultan said last week during a panel at an American Airlines NDC summit in Dallas.
This week, Concur will announce that the next batch of TripLink participants will include Omni Hotels, last-minute booking app HotelTonight and rideshare network Lyft. Yet, the one that will get the most attention is Lufthansa, which is roughly a month away from enacting its contentious plan to surcharge global distribution system bookings.
Concur is looking to get in on some corporate travel distribution revenue as it courts airlines to adopt its TripLink open-booking solution.
United Airlines still plans to launch Concur's TripLink with customers later this year, but not before the airline's new website goes live, United western division managing director Anthony Toth told The Beat during last week's annual Concur Fusion 2015 event in San Francisco.