American Airlines’ NDC drive will cause disruption

The airline will withhold more than 40% of its fares from traditional GDSs, with full content only available through NDC channels

Mar 22, 2023

The drive by major network carriers to transform third‑party distribution through New Distribution Capability (NDC) technology will reach a new stage in the US from April, threatening disruption to agents, travel management companies (TMCs) and customers.

Key takeaways

  • Most key players, including TMCs, GDSs and third-party booking technology partners, have stated they will not be fully prepared to facilitate NDC implementation by April;
  • The decade-long drive to NDC has been driven by two key aims: first, to move to Amazon-style, personalized retailing through third-party distribution, mimicking how carriers can sell direct; second, to cut the cost of GDS distribution by diluting the grip of the GDSs on indirect sales.

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