IATA e-services aims to facilitate sales of ancillary services and collection of related revenue through industry adoption of IATA’s electronic miscellaneous document (EMD) standard. This will enable industry growth of ancillary revenues across multiple sales channels, including travel agents. Implementation of the EMD standard can bring US$2.9 billion in annual benefits to the industry. The targets agreed by the Board are to have six live GDSs and 40 EMD capable airlines in 2011. The target of industry capability is set for end 2012 and 100% EMD usage in BSPs by end 2013.
To date 220 airlines are committed to meet these deadlines and 17 airlines are EMD capable. A total of 40 EMD capable airlines are expected by end 2011. A major milestone towards the target of 100% EMD in IATA BSPs was accomplished in April with Amadeus and Finnair issuing the very first EMD in IATA’s Finland BSP. Another five major GDSs are planning to be live in IATA BSPs this year.
At the June 2011 meeting the Board agreed to redefine the project scope. The new scope definition covers all airlines that are currently selling or planning to sell EMDs via GDSs and settle via IATA BSPs. Based on this approach, IATA will run a campaign this summer to review airlines currently included in the scope. The results will be shared at the Board meeting in December 2011.
IATA has furthermore analyzed the impact on the industry of requiring 100% EMD usage in IATA BSP by end 2013. It was found that the risks are limited when EMD penetration reaches over 90%.
An action plan and stakeholder communication plan will also be put in place in 2012 to make sure the industry is well-informed. To further limit risks, IATA will monitor the late EMD adopters closely and provide support in meeting the sunset target date.