Travel Like A Pro: Your Insider Guide

With so much industry jargon being tossed around, it can be difficult to understand the meaning behind all the acronyms and unfamiliar terms. Read up on these this list and feel like a true travel insider.

APEX: Advance purchase excursion fare is an airline fare that is usually discounted because there are restrictions. For example, a fare with a 14-day Apex cannot be purchased within 14 days of travel and can’t be chanced within 14 days of travel once issued.

APIS: Advance Passenger Information is specific passport information required prior to check-in for travel to certain countries including the US, UAE, and Spain.

BAR: Best Available Rate: A term used when booking hotels.

Billback: Pre-authorization for hotel to charge a client’s stay to the travel management company (TMCs) saving the traveler from having to expense the cost of the room as the company is invoiced later for the booking. 

Cancellation Rule: A fare rule: whether a flight or hotel room booking can be cancelled. In many cases, cancellations mean money will be lost and fares that can be cancelled can often only be done so by paying a penalty.

Codeshare: This is an agreement where two or more airlines share the same flight. A seat can be purchased through each airline, but all passengers will be on the same physical plane. For example, Virgin Atlantic and Delta codeshare on UK-US flights.

Dynamic discount: A negotiated hotel rate that is not a fixed amount but a percentage discount off the BAR.

ESTA: Electronic System for Travel Authorization to the US.

FOP: The form of payment, for example, credit or debit card.

Fully flexible ticket: A fare that allows cancellations or changes free of charge.

GDS: Global distribution system is a booking system used by TMCs to sell travel products.

Holding seats: Most Travel Management Companies (TMC) can hold seats on flights for a period of time determined by the airline’s rules. This can only be done with the passenger’s correct passport name.

IT fare: Inclusive Tour is a fare that is very low but must be sold in conjunction with a land product and priced together as a package. Often cost effective, but not available for all airlines.

J-class: The fully flexible business-class fare, often the highest on the market, allowing full refund and changes.

Key account manager: The main point of contact allocated by a TMC to a client, who reviews travel spend and booking patterns to suggest ways to streamline travel to save the company money and time.

Loyalty system: A company system offering incentives and offers for repeat customers. There are lots of airline, hotel and car-hire loyalty schemes that are worth joining as they reward the travelers.

LRA: Late-room availability is a negotiated hotel rate that is valid until the last room is full.

NDC: The New Distribution Capability is a travel industry-supported program launched by IATA for the development and market adoption of a new, XML-based data transmission standard. The NDC Standard enhances the capability of communications between airlines and travel agents and enables the travel industry to transform the way air products are retailed to companies, leisure and business travelers.

Negotiated rates: Exclusive rates a business will have access to at a hotel, after negotiating room-night volumes.

Non-ref: A non-refundable ticket. If cancelled, payment will be retained by the airline, hotel or other supplier.

OBT: An online booking tool is offered by TMCs to clients to book their own travel.

Open jaw: A journey where the passenger flies into one city, but out from another.

Passport names: It’s essential to have the passenger’s name as it appears on their passport when booking travel for them.

Queues: Bookings that require action by a travel manager, for example, because of a schedule change, will appear on a global distribution system (GDS) queue system.

Reissue: If a client wants to change the travel date on an issued ticket, it would be reissued with the new dates.

Restricted ticket: Usually at the lower end of the pricing scale for the cabin, this ticket does not allow refunds or changes.

Semi-flexible ticket: The ticket is non-refundable but changes can be made for a fee.

TMC: Travel Management company is a company that sells business travel to other companies.

Travel policy: Many companies have a travel policy in place to control spend. The policy can include budget parameters and permitted class of travel and hotel.

Upgrade: When a guest or passenger is offered a better room or cabin class than he or she booked.

Void: Airline tickets can sometimes be voided on the same day as issued, subject to the individual airline’s terms and conditions.

Waitlist: When flights are full, a booking can be placed ‘on waitlist,’ in the event that someone may cancel and the seat becomes available.

If you liked this peek into some industry jargon, check out our full list of A-Z of business travel.