Global Travel Distribution (GTD)

The activities of the globally active travel distribution partner for accommodation and destination services generated positive growth with its activities in 2015. Turnover went up to CHF 1,979.3 million (2014: CHF 1,933.6 million). Organic growth came to 9.8%. By the end of 2015, the number of full-time employees (FTE) was 1,489, which is 7.8% more than a year previously.

A new record of close to 15 million room nights was set in 2015.

Ivan Walter, CEO Global Travel Distribution Division (GTD)

As a travel distribution partner, GTA offers travel agencies, online travel agencies, tour operators and consolidators easy access to more than 50,000 hotels and apartments worldwide, as well as 15,000 destination services in 175 destinations all over the world.

Top 10 source markets

Of all the overnight stays and destination services booked through GTA and the TravelCube and TravelBound travel agency sales brands in 2015, the greatest number came from the following source markets: United Kingdom, Australia, United States, Italy, Germany, Japan, South Korea, Turkey, Spain, Saudi Arabia.

Global Travel Distribution (GTD) with GTA is an industry pioneer and a leading global travel distribution partner for accommodation and destination services in the business-to-business sector.

The strongest growth was seen in Asian source markets with close to +30%. There was very strong growth in bookings by travellers from China (+94%), Thailand (+77%) and India (+46% each). 

Top 10 destinations

GTA simplifies booking processes for these companies so they can make any travel bookings requested by their travellers. GTA uses modern digital technology to make booking transactions fast and easy for travel companies on the one hand, and for hotels and destination services providers on the other.

GTA offers accommodation and destination services in destinations all over the world. In 2015 the following cities attracted the most bookings: Paris, London, Dubai, Rome, New York, Istanbul, Singapore, Berlin, Barcelona, Praque.

Paris

About a third of the destinations are in Asia/Pacific, the Middle East and Africa. 2015 saw double-digit year-on-year growth for these destinations. There was particularly strong demand for Phuket (+35%), Bangkok (+31%), Berlin (+28%), Budapest (+25%), Melbourne and Bali (+24% each). Beach destinations experienced growth of almost 40%. Bookings for destination services (transfers, city tours, excursions, reservations etc.) went up by more than 25% to more than 900,000. Train passes for travel in Japan, helicopter flights and shows in Las Vegas, amusement parks in the United States, Singapore and Hong Kong, trips to the Vatican and wine tours in Australia were particularly popular.

An average of
40,000 room nights were booked every
day in 2015

Around 180,000 price and availability requests were received
every minute

Over 130,000 search queries made every
day on the client booking website

Around 260 million daily availability and price requests are made every day on GTAʼs global systems. In 2015 an average of about 40,000 room nights and 2,500 destination services were booked each day.

In 2015 people made their bookings an average of 51 days ahead of travelling. The average stay at destinations was 3.02 days. People stayed longest in New York and Istanbul – more than four days on average – followed by Dubai, Prague and Barcelona. 36% of hotel bookings were in three-star hotels, and 25% in hotels with four or two stars.

New York

In 2015 an average of more than 1,200 people a day staying in Paris booked accommodation and local services through GTA systems.

GTA invested in the improvement of its digital products during the financial year. The mobile app “emutrip” was improved in 2015 and serves as a mobile travel planner that allows travel agents to integrate individually booked destination services into the app. Travellers can thus access all their travel information, tickets and vouchers on their smartphone or tablet.

At the end of 2015 a new booking website was launched for travel agencies and tour operators. This includes an integrated travel planner that can be used on mobile devices. New technical interfaces for B2B clients were also planned, tested and launched. These facilitate modern and efficient interaction between GTAʼs systems and the different client groups to suit their specific needs.

For more information on the GTD Division and its operations:

GTA is a global B2B distributor that provides travel companies with easy access to accommodation and destination services for independent travellers. 50,000 hotels and apartments and more than 15,000 transfer services, city tours and excursions, tickets and tour guide services, all of which can be booked online. GTA is an intermediary and distributes to various client types such as travel agencies, online travel agencies, tour operators and consolidators. Despite the high variety of products, it is very easy and fast for clients to make their selections and to book services. Thanks to state-of-the-art technology makes the whole booking process is efficient and dynamic – from the start right through to the automated billing at the end.

Employees negotiate contracts, including rates and availability, with the suppliers that provide these services at the destinations. All services are loaded automatically into the database/booking engines and offered for sale. Travel agencies, online travel agencies, tour operators and consolidators can access the contracted accommodation and destination services through GTAʼs website or through an API feed and then sell the products either online or offline to their customers. GTA thus acts as a global link between the service providers (suppliers) – hotels and airport transfer companies for example – and the sellers who have direct customer contact (clients). GTA uses modern technology and a global distribution network that gives suppliers access to travellers from markets which they would not be able to access on their own. Kuoni offers these services through three different B2B brands: GTA for wholesalers, offline and online travel agents, tour operators and consolidators, TravelCube for travel agencies in Europe, Latin America and Australasia, and TravelBound for travel agencies in North America.

Kuoni earns its money in the GTD Division either through margins built into its prices or through commissions. Margins in this area of business tend to be lower than in the traditional tour operating business, but there is much greater operational leverage. The business model is characterised by a high degree of automation, which keeps transaction costs low. As a result of “dynamic sourcing” of products, prices and therefore margins can be adjusted continuously in line with supply and demand. The use of modern technology allows bookings to be processed automatically and little manual intervention. The business model used in the GTD Division is recognised as being particularly efficient and progressive, which means that global opportunities for growth are excellent.