Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Does Kayak Become Unusable Without American Airlines?

American Airlines is pulling its flight listings from Kayak.com, the travel site based in Concord, MA and Norwalk, CT.

American, which apparently knows that I've bought tickets from the airline by clicking through from Kayak, sent me an e-mail last night. The subject was: "American Airlines Ends Relationship With Kayak."

I think this will hurt American a tiny bit, since some travelers are accustomed to starting their airfare searches at Kayak, which until now has been comprehensive.

But I think it will hurt Kayak a lot, since American is the #2 airline in terms of domestic passengers carried, and #7 in terms of international, according to Wikipedia. Kayak is really not usable without American prices in the database. As of today, Kayak doesn't show American's fares, but it does offer an "Info" link that takes you to CheapTickets.com, which then shows you the fares. Not all that useful for a comparison-shopping site...

There's no news about the change on Kayak's blog,

Kayak posted a statement on their blog, but the search results presented to travelers don't make what's going on very clear.

(Here's a Seattle Post-Intelligencer blog post about the spat.)

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Blogger Ed Blachman said...

Scott, there's an item on the Kayak blog -- it's just not the most current anymore.

August 5, 2008 12:06 PM  
Blogger Scott Kirsner said...

Ed -

Thanks for pointing that out. I made the change.


August 5, 2008 2:47 PM  
Anonymous Collagist said...

The searches are sure going to look less comprehensive and it does require a lot of clicking and closing those pesky pop-up windows. :(

I am sure _they_ will sort it out and Kayak will start showing AA again.

I happened to see some flavorful comments on Kayak's blog already.

August 6, 2008 7:40 AM  

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