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April 01, 2013

Orbitz and American settle lawsuits over ticket distribution

American Airlines and Orbitz announced on Monday that the two companies have settled their legal disputes over ticket distribution.

Details of the settlement were not disclosed and need to be approved by the bankruptcy court overseeing the restructuring of American's parent company, AMR Corp.

The lawsuits date back to 2010 when American pulled its fares off Orbitz, one of the largest travel websites, because Orbitz refused to use a direct connection to American's system. American later filed a civil anti-trust lawsuit against Orbitz and its parent company, Traveloport.

At issue were the fees American and other airlines pay the big travel reservation systems to display flights and make bookings. American wants more of its travel partners, such as travel agencies and websites, to connect directly to American's reservation system through a service called Direct Connect, which would save the airline booking fees.

Travelport, which operates the Worldspan and Galileo global distributions systems, announced last month, that it had extended its content agreements with American through the end of the year.

Here is the joint statement that Orbitz and American issued on Monday.

"American Airlines, a wholly owned subsidiary of AMR Corporation, and Orbitz Worldwide, LLC, a leading online travel company, announce that they have reached an agreement to resolve all litigation between them. The settlement requires review and approval by the court presiding over AMR Corporation’s restructuring. At this time, neither company will have further comment."

American had been involved in similar litigation with Sabre Holdings. A settlement was reached in that lawsuit last year, awarding American an estimated $280 million payment.

-Andrea Ahles

Read more here: http://blogs.star-telegram.com/sky_talk/2011/06/american-airlines-continues-fight-with-travel-site-with-new-ad.html#storylink=cpy


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