Air France, KLM Extend Amadeus Pact

Amadeus and Air France-KLM, the largest airline group in


, have agreed to extend their full content agreement until December 2013. The agreement guarantees Amadeus travel agents worldwide access to the entire range of fares, schedules and inventory relating to more than 74.8 million seats and 90.000 flights operated annually by Air France-KLM.

"Travel agencies are an essential part of our global sales strategy," said Jean Wieviorka, vice president, corporate and distribution, Air France-KLM. "We are delighted to have reached a cost-effective distribution agreement that will continue to give Amadeus travel agents worldwide an efficient access to the wide range of Air France-KLM services and fares."

The full content agreement also includes the content of subsidiary airlines Martinair and VLM and ensures access to the same content through Amadeus as through any other direct or indirect sales channel, distribution provider or website.

"Amadeus is committed to securing long-term full content partnerships with the world’s leading airlines, providing continued stability in the travel distribution marketplace," says Philippe Chérèque, executive vice president, commercial, Amadeus. "Under the terms of this agreement Amadeus agents now have access to all Air France-KLM group content on a worldwide basis, which is a great move forward from our preceding pan-European agreement."

Amadeus has recently announced long-term full content agreements with key airlines including British Airways (three years), Iberia (five years), Lufthansa and Swiss (five years), SAS Group (five years) and Virgin Atlantic (three years).

More than 80 percent of all airline bookings sold by Amadeus travel agencies worldwide are made on airlines with content agreements. This represents over 280 million bookings a year, Amadeus said.

Air France and KLM represent years of French and Dutch airline tradition, Amadeus notes, but Air France-KLM represents a first: a holding company made up of two national airlines. Air France-KLM is the largest airline group in Europe and one of the largest in the world. Through its operating units, the company serves 258 destinations in more than 100 countries around the globe with a fleet of 607 aircraft.

Air France and KLM operate independently from hubs in Paris and Amsterdam, but are working to coordinate their operations, both as sister companies and as members of the SkyTeam alliance, which also includes Alitalia, Delta Air Lines, Korean Air Lines, and Northwest Airlines.