WITH ALL THE noise coming from OTAs and book-direct brand-loyalty campaigns over the past few years, it is easy for hotel owners to overlook a booking channel that has been around for a lot longer than free Wi-Fi.
A new study shows a record use of global distribution systems or GDS, the channel used by travel agents to connect clients with flights and hotel rooms.
By the end of this year, more than 68 million hotel reservations will be made via GDS, 2 million more than in 2016, according to the 2017 Global Travel Agent GDS study by TravelClick and Phoenix Marketing International.
The research is based on TravelClick’s reservation data and surveys of more than 900 travel agents in 52 countries who use Amadeus, Sabre and Travelport.
The findings back reports from other research groups that more leisure and business travelers are turning to travel agents to plan their excursions. The studies also show younger generations are driving the renewed interest in travel agents.