The American Society of Travel Agents on Friday suggested to members a number of actions they could take in response to American Airlines' decision to initiate a surcharge on bookings made outside the United States and Caribbean using Travelport
"Here is a list of options that you have, each of which may entail a competitive disadvantage against aa.com or other agencies," according to an ASTA memo obtained by The Beat
. "Continue to book AA flights through Travelport and pay AA's applicable segment fees; surcharge customers for the added fees (where allowed by contract and law); discontinue sale of AA flights; review current GDS contracts for restrictions on changing or adding an alternate booking system for AA content (ASTA's understanding is that the current Travelport contracts do not permit agencies to escape the AA penalties by ending the contract, but each agency should independently verify this in its own contract); use an alternate booking system, which could include another GDS, an online booking tool or AA's Direct Connect (if available); contract with a host agency that subscribes to a non-Travelport system for AA content.
"The decision of which of these alternatives to pursue is up to each agency to decide," the memo concluded.