August 29, 2014

American Airlines fares are back on Orbitz

The two sides enter into a letter of intent to settle a dispute over booking fees.

Online travel site Orbitz announced Friday that it had reached a deal with American Airlines, enabling the carrier’s fares to be placed back on the site.

American had withdrawn its fares Tuesday and had planned to take US Airways fares off the site Monday after the two sides couldn’t reach a new agreement on fees.

“We are pleased that our long-standing relationship with American Airlines allowed us to quickly resolve business matters and that we continue to offer a broad range of options, including American Airlines and US Airways flights, to the millions of shoppers who book travel on our global sites each day,” Orbitz President Sam Fulton said in a statement.

American confirmed that the two companies had entered into a letter of intent to end the dispute.

“The companies are working toward final agreements based on the letter of intent,” the Fort Worth-based airline said in a statement.

The dispute was the latest skirmish over fees paid by American and other airlines to travel reservation systems to display flights and make bookings. American has wanted more of its travel partners, such as travel agencies and websites, to connect directly to American’s system to save money on booking fees.

In 2013, American and Orbitz settled a lawsuit that dated to 2010 when American pulled its fares off Orbitz because the website refused to use a direct connection to American’s reservation system. Orbitz’s parent company, Travelport, operates the Worldspan and Galileo global distribution systems.

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