A formal complaint has been filed in Brussels against Lufthansa Group’s controversial €16 GDS fee.

The European Technology & Travel Services Association (Ettsa), which represents global distribution services and online travel agents, is claiming a breach of key provisions of the EU’s code of conduct on computerised reservation systems.

The complaint to the European Commission covers the German airline and its associate carriers, Austrian Airlines, Swiss and Brussels Airlines.

The complaint was filed to the Commission’s Directorate General of Mobility and Transport, which holds enforcement powers on the code of conduct.

The Distribution Cost Charge was imposed from September 1, with Ettsa claiming Lufthansa and the main airlines under its control are now discriminating against those customers who use independent travel agents to book their tickets by adding €16 to the ticket price.

Ettsa’s secretary general, Christoph Klenner, said: “The only way for travel agents to avoid the discriminatory surcharge is to switch from traditional GDSs to an alternative platform controlled by Lufthansa, where only such content is shown that Lufthansa chooses to show.

“In addition to taking travel agencies hostage and forcing them to spend unnecessary resources on the switch to Lufthansa’s platform, Lufthansa’s move will severely hurt comparison shopping and competition.

Read full article at:  Travel Weekly