ORBITZ has become the first major Online Travel Agency group to commit to ITA Software since the airfare search company was bought by Google, a transaction now being reviewed by the US Department of Justice. Orbitz, an ITA customer since 2001, agreed to keep using ITA’s QPX software for its Orbitz.com and CheapTickets.com websites through December 31, 2015. The move is significant because the Google-ITA “merger” has caused much industry angst, leading to the formation of FairSearch.org to lobby against the deal.
Many Fairsearch.org members are actually ITA customers – Bing, Kayak, TripAdvisor, Hotwire – while others such as Travelcity, Sabre, Zuji and Farelogix got on board because, what the hell, anything to impede the Google Juggernaut. Other ITA clients include Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Continental Airlines, Southwest Airlines, United Airlines, US Airways and Virgin Atlantic Airways, ITA was founded by computer scientists from MIT and is based in Cambridge, Mass., USA.