10 May 2007

For some time there has been a return to basics by the legacy carriers. Battered and bruised even before 9/11 the specter of the failed attempts by United Airlines (Allegis) and SAS to build global broad based travel businesses have scared off the majority of airlines. In recent years we have seen significant divestiture by airlines of even some seemingly core airline services for example BA selling SpeedWing and its airline IT business, Qantas the same, Even Lufthansa offloaded its 50% share in Thomas Cook to long time partner KarstadtQuelle. A recent global survey of nearly 200 carriers by Sabre Airline Solutions has found that less than half (48%) ‘believe developing new revenue streams is important to the overall airline revenue strategy’

However the LCCs continue to power ahead with their ancillary revenue streams. The ever ebullient Mr O’Leary from Ryanair has made no secret of his desire to broaden the base of his airline to a point where he will be actually paying people to fly. With significant revenue streams from its partners in the Car Rental business (Hertz) and Hotels (Formerly Travelport/Octopus and now Expedia WTTC) he is clearly showing that this can be done.

Similarly EasyJet has some proof of this trend. Ancillary revenue per seat for easyJet has increased by 18% to £3.81 during the first half of its financial year, with ‘partner revenues' from car hire and insurance, rather than hotels, driving the growth. The largest single source is from Credit Card fees. All airlines should sit up and pay attention to this. With Google Checkout offering zero fees for processing – we still cannot understand why no airline seems to be partnering with Google for this way to drop cash to the bottom line.

T2Impact is a strong believer in opportunities for non-transaction based revenue opportunities as a core part of any travel site’s gross income.

When the overall travel market goes soft we expect to see a rush hunt for new revenue. Better be prepared now rather than later.

We are here to help


Timothy J O'Neil-Dunne
Managing Partner - T2Impact Ltd
Global Travel eBusiness Tel (
US) +1 425 836 4770
Mobile (US) +1 425 785 4457
Mobile (International) +44 7770 33 81 75
Fax +1 815 377 1583

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