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A Study to Examine If Integration of OTAs Features can Make SBTs More Flexible Online Airline Reservation Systems?

Author(s): Arif Mushtaq | Suzia Bt. Sulaiman | P.D.D. Dominic | Sadia Riaz | Muhammad Abdul Tawab Khalil

Journal: Information Technology Journal
ISSN 1812-5638

Volume: 10;
Issue: 7;
Start page: 1315;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) | Self Booking Tools (SBTs) | Flexible Online Airline Reservation Systems (FOARS) | opaque fares

Suppliers branded websites are Self-Booking Tools (SBTs) providing direct linkage of the passenger with the airline industry. They provide carrier-direct bookings facility to travelers without having them going through the hassle of other intermediates. On the contrary, Online Travel Agencies (OTAs) cash upon the nexus of computer reservation systems and global distribution systems act as a central hub for price differentiation and comparison. Their success is derived by innovational strategies, as a result they hold lions share in the travel industry. In this paper we identify and discuss different OTAs features that are not integrated into SBTs. It is essential to understand if the integration of some OTAs features could make SBTs more flexible online airline reservation systems. Should this is the case, then how could this be done. Therefore, a preliminary but comprehensive survey with the focus group was conducted with airline executives, using quantitative survey method to examine their subjective satisfaction with existing systems and to get feedback on the idea of OTAs features integration into SBTs so as to make them more flexible. The finding indicates that although opaque fare, matrix display, alternate airport search and hotel search facility are all part of OTAs innovations, adoption of opaque fare concept can make SBTs more flexible online airline reservation systems.

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