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Competition Heats Up for Online Air Ticket Discount Services

Competition Heats Up for Online Air Ticket Discount Services

Posted January. 23, 2003 22:35,   


Airliners are waging heated competition to lure air travelers over the Internet as well as in the air. Leading carriers are rushing to upgrade their Internet services as online air ticket sales continue to increase sharply.

Korean Airline said on Jan. 23 that its ticket sales over the Internet last year topped 100 billion won. According the nation`s largest air carrier, online ticket sales were worth 84 billion in domestic lines and 28 billion won in international – total 112 billion won.

The figure is up 82% from 61.4 billion won a year earlier, and a more than 32 times increase compared with 3.4 billion won in 1998 when online ticket sale was first introduced.

KAL targets 200 billion won in online ticket sales this year – 125 billion won from domestic and 75 billion won from international lines. The amount accounts for 5% of the company`s total revenue target set for this year.

Asiana Airline has also seen Internet ticket sales soaring recently. It sold 50 billion won-worth tickets over the Internet last year, a more than 60-fold increase compared with 800 million won in 1998.

In line with the surge of Internet ticket sales, the two carriers have begun to upgrade Internet services in earnest. They are now building an electronic-ticket system respectively, which will allow clients buying tickets online to get aboard without carrying paper tickets.

Using e-tickets, travelers will not have to worry about missing tickets or visit airliners to get new tickets when their schedules change, since they can use Internet or phone services instead.

˝We plans to introduce a wide variety of new services for Internet customers by developing Web sites for different age groups and expanding the Skypass bonus service to international lines,˝ said an official from KAL.

Myung-Jai Lee mjlee@donga.com