As the travel industry begins to experiment with different, more direct ways of presenting and distributing their products to travellers, the lines between direct and third-party channels are being blurred.


Whilst some airlines have embraced social media to the extent where they push deals through platforms such as Facebook, the majority are yet to fully engage with more cutting-edge platforms such as bots. However, the new generation of distribution involves more information being distributed across smaller screens – meaning that inventory comes at a premium, and innovating is critical to getting in front of potential users.


Initiatives like IATA’s NDC are pushing the industry to transform the way air tickets are sold by allowing for integrations with more product differentiation and access to fuller, more dynamic air content, independent of the traditional GDS.

In our white paper penned by Skyscanner co-founder and CEO Gareth Williams, we outline the spectrum of the current distribution landscape, and present a solution for airlines seeking to win in this new environment. A solution which enables airlines to bring a rich and differentiated shopping experience to travellers, across the greatest span of platforms and devices.

In the aviation industry, direct booking vs third party distribution has always been an either/or choice. Those days have come to an end.

Emerging platforms like voice and bots, coupled with evolving online marketplaces, mean the lines are blurring. So the point where an intermediary’s relationship with the traveller ends and an airline’s begins is no longer as clear as it once was.

The time has come to offer a fresh form of direct booking in metasearch.
Here, after months of consultation with our partners, we set out Skyscanner’s vision offering the best of both worlds. All the benefits of ancillary up-sell and branding control, coupled with access to a growing and engaged audience of travellers across new platforms.

Quite simply, I believe it’s the future for airlines.
— Gareth Williams, CEO, Skyscanner


Interested in reading more? Download our Future of Distribution whitepaper now!