Lufthansa says GDS surcharge impact neutral so far

Thu Oct 29, 2015 5:38am EDT
 
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BERLIN Oct 29 (Reuters) - Lufthansa's 16 euro ($17.53) surcharge for bookings not made via its own website is having a broadly neutral impact on revenues and profits so far, its top managers said on Thursday.

The charge, introduced in September, has sparked much debate within the industry and provoked criticism from providers of global distribution systems (GDS) and travel agents, which are most affected.

Lufthansa CEO Carsten Spohr said in the home markets of its carriers, there were no changes to booking trends, though there was some impact in other markets.

A survey by the Global Business Travel Association last week said 42 percent of travel buyers have decreased bookings with Lufthansa since the charge was introduced and that 93 percent were not considering booking directly on Lufthansa's sites.

($1 = 0.9126 euros) (Reporting by Victoria Bryan; Editing by Maria Sheahan)