RealTime IT News

Taking Travel the Private Label Route

Expedia Inc. launched a private label booking solution called Worldwide Travel Exchange (WWTE) and said AA.com, the American Airlines Web site, is the first customer.

American will add hotel and car booking services to its site. Financial arrangements were not disclosed.

WWTE is a division of Travelscape.com Inc., a subsidiary of Expedia , which is being acquired by Barry Diller's USA Networks Inc.

The hotel and car rentals at WWTE feature both negotiated and published rate inventory and the operation offers live agent and e-mail support 24 hours a day/seven days a week.

"Worldwide Travel Exchange allows us to expand our distribution and strengthen the wholesale side of our business," said Greg Slyngstad, senior vice president of destinations for Expedia. "Offering a private label solution to our travel industry partners opens up new distribution opportunities we can send even more business to our hotel and car partners and travelers ultimately will see even better deals."

"In addition to booking air travel, managing their AADVANTAGE accounts and checking special fares on AA.com, our customers will now have the added convenience of making car and hotel reservations at the same time," said John Samuel, American's vice president of customer technology.