RealTime IT News

Delta Revokes Offline Ticket Surcharge

An attempt by Delta Air Lines to encourage flyers to purchase tickets online by charging a fee for telephone bookings has been discontinued, the company said.

On January 11, Delta announced it would charge an additional $2 fee for all domestic bookings that were not done through the airline's Web site. But due to public criticism, the company this week rescinded the surcharge.

"The market spoke and we responded," said spokesperson Jackie Pate. "The surcharge was discontinued because of "competitive reasons."

The company had said that streamlining ticket purchases services online would save an estimated $1 billion in distribution costs.

Online ticket purchases account for approximately 2.5 percent of all tickets sold and will increase to 8.4 percent by 2002, say industry analysts. The travel industry represents the single largest retail category online, according to Forrester Research and is expected to reach $30 billion in sales by 2003.