Sabre begins live testing of its NDC offers with United Airlines and Beyond NDC agency partners

4 April, 2019

Sabre Corporation has released its first set of New Distribution Capability (NDC) APIs with launch carrier, United Airlines. Sabre's Beyond NDC agency partners are using these capabilities to enable live NDC bookings and provide customers with a more robust shopping experience and more tailored approach to specific personal expectations.

The global technology specialist has launched its NDC-enabled shopping, booking and fulfilment capability with the US major for flights across the airline's global network. It is the first major airline to launch the Sabre NDC capabilities, an advanced shopping API that integrates and normalises air content from all sources, including traditional, low cost carrier and NDC offers.

This development marks a further significant step forward for the travel industry, advancing what is a pan-industry vision and moving NDC closer to becoming an everyday reality for travellers, carriers, agencies, corporations and more. Sabre's NDC solutions will allow United to offer new fare options and additional flight amenities for a more comprehensive shopping experience for customers who choose to book directly through Sabre.

Sabre is currently working with all its Beyond NDC airline partners to integrate their NDC content this year. It also plans to release additional capabilities throughout 2019, including integration into its agent desktop workspace, Sabre Red 360.

As part of its pan-industry development plan, Sabre is working to integrate the needs of multiple stakeholders in the travel ecosystem, including airlines, agencies, corporations and travellers. This holistic approach goes beyond just shopping and distribution and will incorporate important agency processes, such as invoicing/itinerary activities, mid- and back-office workflows and duty of care considerations.

"NDC is an important component of a wide-ranging evolution in air content distribution. Testing Sabre's NDC-enabled shopping APIs and working with United to find ways to bring incremental value to clients while maintaining or enhancing full end-to-end capabilities is fundamental to preparing for a successful future," says John Bukowski, director of distribution for American Express Global Business Travel.

Access to NDC content, alongside other new and existing content, can help expand offers to travellers in a scalable manner. "Modern business travellers have specific expectations: they want access to all content and they want to know they're getting the best personalised fares and servicing in an omnichannel environment," says Mr Bukowski.

Last month Sabre announced new partnerships in its Beyond NDC program. Corporate travel management leaders Travel and Transport and Reed & Mackay join AERTiCKET, Europe's largest independent airline ticket consolidator, in this latest development for the program. Sabre says each partner will bring "a new perspective" to Beyond NDC.

These newest partners join travel industry influencers - American Airlines, American Express Global Business Travel, American Express Travel & Lifestyle Services, BCD Travel, Carlson Wagonlit Travel, CTM, Delta Air Lines, Finnair, Flight Centre Travel Group, Qantas Airways, Singapore Airlines and United Airlines - in Sabre's quest to lead the industry's evolution toward next-generation retailing, distribution and fulfilment solutions.