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Airlines Will Get Centralised E-Ticketing

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) has announced that it is developing a service with IBM that will link the e-ticket systems of hundreds of airlines worldwide.

Under the new scheme, participating airlines will be able to link to a centralised service for processing and exchanging e-tickets. In turn, this will enable passengers to fly and rebook on more than one airline on the same trip -- which is not currently possible unless booking with the few carriers that have reciprocal arrangements.

"This new service will mark another e-business milestone for the airline industry," said Greg Conley, general manager, IBM Global Travel & Transportation.

"It will enable airlines to connect to a centralized e-ticket service by developing a single, simple interface -- a much more efficient process than the current one requiring airlines to establish reciprocal electronic links with one another."

Airlines that do not currently have their own e-ticketing capability will be able to use the new service instead. It will act as a host system, with facilities to create, store and process e-tickets.