ATPCO and SITA today announced that Southwest Airlines® is the latest carrier to join NDC Exchange, a platform for NDC that enables content interoperability across the airline distribution ecosystem. By joining NDC Exchange, Southwest continues its journey to make its content more accessible to business travelers in a way that’s easy to use and hassle-free.
NDC Exchange is a community platform created by ATPCO and SITA that enables API connectivity between airlines and sellers using New Distribution Capability (NDC), an XML-based data transmission standard set by IATA. NDC Exchange enables NDC API format translation for any party (GDSs, travel agents, aggregators, online travel agencies and travel management companies) on a neutral, cost-effective basis.
Now that Southwest Airlines has partnered with ATPCO and SITA, the Dallas-based airline has a simple way to connect and expand its offers to multiple distribution points that are already connected to NDC Exchange. Southwest will continue to maintain complete control over which sellers have access to its content as their primary focus for this distribution channel is the corporate travel space.
Through NDC Exchange, the carrier will be able to focus on showcasing how it can help business travelers reach the places and people that are important to their businesses, while NDC Exchange facilitates the technical aspects including onboarding and providing 24/7 support to aggregators and/or sellers. Southwest anticipates taking its first NDC Exchange bookings by the end of summer.
NDC Exchange supports shopping, booking, and servicing workflows and enables the cross-selling of ancillary services between airlines, and among airlines and sellers. Using a common data model, it normalizes messages regardless of version or format, creating interoperability across the distribution ecosystem. Travel sellers can access multiple airlines via NDC Exchange, hence lowering the cost of their implementation.
Rob Brown, Senior Director of B2B Strategy at Southwest Airlines said: “By partnering with NDC Exchange, we are making our API more accessible. This new addition to our no-cost multichannel distribution portfolio will drive consistency while providing the necessary functionality needed to support our business customers. Corporate travel managers and travelers will have access to our everyday low fares and enjoy an easy and hassle-free experience from the same Southwest they know and love when booking via this channel.”
Graham Wareham, Director of NDC and Partnerships at ATPCO, added, “Southwest Airlines is a welcomed new addition to the NDC Exchange family. We are seeing a steady growth of airlines and sellers alike to the platform, and with this continued momentum and more subscribers, the value only increases for the industry.”
Diana Einterz, President, SITA Americas, said: “Southwest joins a growing community of airlines that is benefiting from the simplicity and transparency of using NDC Exchange. It allows the airline to access multiple sellers all from one connection.”
NDC Exchange enables airlines and sellers to further augment their NDC distribution strategy with additional retailing and settlement capabilities made available through the platform, which includes integrations to Routehappy rich content as well as Airlines Reporting Corporation (ARC), which provides settlement support.