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turbo3ltr
Occasional Member - Level 1

America Airline flights have a huge markup

Trying to book travel and multiple people in the company are seeing huge markups on AA flights in Concur.

 

For instance, for the same exact flights, (main cabin, non refundable) Concur wanted $866.  If you book on AA.com it was $573.  This additional $300 pushes the desired flight over the corporate rule for triggering special approval.

 

Another example: TUS / CLE: Concur price: $735, aa.com $501.

 

Another example, DFW / CLE: Concur price was $656.  AA.com $279 (I just saw screenshots for this one so didn't verify myself, I suspect this may have been basic economy)

 

 

 

1 Solution
Solution
GrantC
SAP Concur Employee
SAP Concur Employee

The prices on an airline website will almost always be less than what you see in Concur Travel, or any other site that pulls air travel from multiple airlines, such as Expedia or Travelocity. The reason is that Concur Travel, and those other sites, pull data from one or more GDS. The GDS charges fees to the airlines for hosting their fares, so the airline builds those fees into the fares on the GDS and passes them on to the traveler. The airlines all hate the GDS fees, but AA is the one that has done the most to combat it.

 

AA has been trying to get its content off the GDSs for years. About 15 years ago they pulled their fares from all GDSs, so you had to go to AA to book a flight. For about 3 months their data was not in Concur, Expedia, Travelocity, and any other content aggregators. You can probably guess what happened: it was a complete disaster for AA and they came back to the GDSs pretty quickly. Let’s face it, the average traveler does not go to each airline site individually to see who has the best prices, they go to a content aggregator to compare as many airlines as possible, and usually end up booking through that aggregator.

 

In this case, @RJA6112's post is the most likely cause. AA is trying to get off the GDS ecosystem again, this time with the newer NDC tools. They intentionally do not put their lower-cost fares into the GDSs to get travelers to look elsewhere. They’re even doing extra sneaky things like not offering frequent flyer miles to travelers who book outside of their preferred channels. Will it work this time? Time will tell, but it is working better now than it has in the past. 

 

As @RJA6112 says in their post, the latest version of Concur Travel can search and book from both NDC and GDS content, but not all TMCs can support it just yet. Reach out to your TMC to learn more.

 

Grant Chase - Senior Product Learning Specialist - SAP Learning

View solution in original post

6 REPLIES 6
TriciaW
SAP Concur Employee
SAP Concur Employee

@turbo3ltr  Hello.  Concur actually searches the TMCs GDS for inventory as opposed to the airline website.  There may be a few reasons why the discrepancies are occuring.  

1.  It may be that when a user compares the price in Concur to the airlines website, the inventory may have changed because the airline was down to last seat availability and now the class of service shows sold out in Concur.  Since the GDS provides Concur with the inventory, if the class of service (fare) is not available in that GDS, then it will not be available in Concur.

2.  Dependant on the type of fare (Basic Economy), the fare may be blocked by a rule or at the GDS level

3.  While the flights that are offered through SAP Concur Travel are business travel which uses corporate discounts based on negotiated rates between the airlines and the company and tailored to the company needs and policies. These negotiated rates factor in costs for day-to-day operation of the corporate travel program, traveler safety & security, credit-card management and T&E (Travel and Expense) data management. 

 

Remember to tag me if you respond or feel free to mark this post as Solved if you don't have further questions or comments. To tag me on your response, you click the Reply button, first thing to type is @. This should bring up the username of the person you are replying to.

 


Thank you,
Tricia Whipps
SAP Concur Community Moderator
Did this response answer your question? Be sure to select “Accept as Solution” so your fellow community members can be helped by it as well.
KevinD
Community Manager
Community Manager

@turbo3ltr I also want to clarify for others who might read this thread, SAP Concur does not set prices on Airfare, Car Rental Rates or Hotel Rates.  SAP Concur displays prices that are published by the vendors.


Thank you,
Kevin Dorsey
SAP Concur Community Manager
Did this response answer your question? Be sure to select “Accept as Solution” so your fellow community members can be helped by it as well.
turbo3ltr
Occasional Member - Level 1

That seems to directly counter point 3 Tricia made that states the rates include other costs. Or did I misunderstand?

RJA6112
Occasional Member - Level 2

American Airlines as of last April 2023 moved to NDC about 40% of AA pricing no longer accessible via GDS. The New Concur Travel will enable NDC content and fares to be booked via Concur as long as your TMC is able to enable NDC. 

Solution
GrantC
SAP Concur Employee
SAP Concur Employee

The prices on an airline website will almost always be less than what you see in Concur Travel, or any other site that pulls air travel from multiple airlines, such as Expedia or Travelocity. The reason is that Concur Travel, and those other sites, pull data from one or more GDS. The GDS charges fees to the airlines for hosting their fares, so the airline builds those fees into the fares on the GDS and passes them on to the traveler. The airlines all hate the GDS fees, but AA is the one that has done the most to combat it.

 

AA has been trying to get its content off the GDSs for years. About 15 years ago they pulled their fares from all GDSs, so you had to go to AA to book a flight. For about 3 months their data was not in Concur, Expedia, Travelocity, and any other content aggregators. You can probably guess what happened: it was a complete disaster for AA and they came back to the GDSs pretty quickly. Let’s face it, the average traveler does not go to each airline site individually to see who has the best prices, they go to a content aggregator to compare as many airlines as possible, and usually end up booking through that aggregator.

 

In this case, @RJA6112's post is the most likely cause. AA is trying to get off the GDS ecosystem again, this time with the newer NDC tools. They intentionally do not put their lower-cost fares into the GDSs to get travelers to look elsewhere. They’re even doing extra sneaky things like not offering frequent flyer miles to travelers who book outside of their preferred channels. Will it work this time? Time will tell, but it is working better now than it has in the past. 

 

As @RJA6112 says in their post, the latest version of Concur Travel can search and book from both NDC and GDS content, but not all TMCs can support it just yet. Reach out to your TMC to learn more.

 

Grant Chase - Senior Product Learning Specialist - SAP Learning
turbo3ltr
Occasional Member - Level 1

Thanks for the informative reply.