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Lufthansa Group Has New Partners for Direct Connect and Direct Sales

Lufthansa Group Has New Partners for Direct Connect and Direct Sales

The Lufthansa Group airlines (Austrian Airlines, Brussels Airlines, Lufthansa and Swiss) have concluded co-operative agreements with major distribution partners from different sectors of the industry. The long-term goal is to create attractive and diverse offers that will meet the increasingly individualised and dynamic requirements of distribution partners and business clients.

Direct access to exclusive offers from Lufthansa Group airlines was created to complement existing distribution channels. In future this access will, with new technical solutions, make the process of booking tickets on the Lufthansa Group airlines more innovative, cheaper, and more customer-oriented.

Bucher Reisen, a German tour operator, as well as AerTicket, Germany’s largest ticket wholesaler (consolidator), have already gone live with their respective interfaces now forming a ‘Direct Connect’ to the Lufthansa Group reservation system. The independent travel agency chain Lufthansa City Center has agreed to develop an alternative distribution channel based on a Direct Connect. This new channel provides direct access to the exclusive offers of the Lufthansa Group airlines without the application of the Distribution Cost Charge (DCC).

“We are delighted to have achieved the first direct connects with important sales partners,” said Jens Bischof, member of the Lufthansa German Airlines Board and Chief Commercial Officer, Deutsche Lufthansa AG. “Through this, we are able to work towards a modern, independent and customisable range of offers. As a complement to our existing channels, Direct Connect offers our technology partners a wide range of perspectives for more individual and varied offers for our joint customers.”

Direct connect solutions with additional partners are in the works. The airlines of the Lufthansa Group are collaborating with several technology providers in order to provide a connection directly to sales partners. These IT service providers check the requirements for each individual direct interface and provide support in planning and implementation.

Easier Booking with Google Flights

Technological innovation is also being introduced within the metasearch business. Lufthansa and Google Flights have launched the function ‘Book on Google’ for users in the USA. This allows customers to make a LH.com booking directly within Google Flights on desktop and mobile, thus providing a seamless and easier booking experience for the customer without the need to change websites.

“The partnership with Google will facilitate online bookings, particularly on mobile devices,” added Jens Bischof. “With ‘Book on Google’ users have a seamless booking experience on Google Flights. Lufthansa is the first legacy carrier worldwide to which Google Flights offers this direct booking function. With ‘Book on Google’ we will strengthen ticket sales in this channel. This is an important step in realising Lufthansa’s new sales and distribution strategy, which strives to modernise existing booking processes as well as to develop new and alternative distribution channels.”

In order to inform sales partners in detail about the new opportunities available through Direct Connect and about existing technology providers, the Lufthansa Group has created a new website accessible via the following link: http://www.lufthansagroup-directconnect.com/en/

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NEIL STEEDMAN has been a trade journalist, editor and proofreader for 53 years, and ITTN's News & Features Editor for 43 years. His travel blog is at www.thetravelbuddhist.com.

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