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State Purchasing

STMP - Historical Travel Agency Vendor Information

Awarded Vendor(s)

National Travel Systems

National Travel Systems Contract Term

December 15, 2003 through February 28, 2010

Contract Information

TPASS secured a contract with National Travel Systems to provide state travelers with reservation and ticketing services for airlines, rail and bus travel, rental cars, and hotels.

State agencies are required to use the NTS contract for reservations requiring travel agency services. The NTS contract is also available to institutions of higher education; all Texas counties which participate in the program services; all Texas municipalities which participate in the program services; all Texas public junior colleges participating in the program services; and all Texas school districts participating in the program services. (The Texas counties, municipalities, public junior/community colleges and school districts are required to be members of the TPASS Cooperative Purchasing Program to utilize contract travel services.)

NTS offers the lowest available fares (airfare, rental car and hotel rates) available for the traveler's requirements; with this as their mission NTS explores all scheduling and pricing possibilities to ensure that the traveler receives the best options with which to make an informed decision.

Airfare Booking

  • NTS will evaluate the state contract airfare and all other airline fares available to the general public in determining the lowest available airfare meeting requirements;
  • NTS will offer alternate routings and times and waitlist reservations on lower fares;
  • In the event that lower airfares become available through waitlist clearance prior to departure NTS will confirm reservations at such lower fares and reissue tickets;
  • NTS will make a full refund if the lowest available airfare is not offered within the constraints of the rules and provisions of that fare. The refund shall consist of the difference in price from the booked airfare versus the lowest available airfare.

Hotel Reservations

  • NTS will offer the contracted lodging establishments and rates; and,
  • If other rates or non-contract lodging establishments are booked, NTS will advise state travelers of all differences in the cancellation policies, early check-out fees and any other type of fees that the hotel applies.

Rental Car Reservations

  • NTS will offer the contract rental car companies and contract rates to travelers wishing to make rental car reservations;
  • If other rates or non-contract vendors are booked, NTS will advise state travelers of all differences in the provisions and costs, including charges for loss/damage insurance, liability insurance, mileage, and drop-off fees (there will be no surprises or unexpected charges).

CUSTOMER SERVICE:

Accounting Assistance/Formatting: If requested, NTS will obtain accounting information from the traveler or from the participating entity and enter this information into the PNR to be reflected on the invoice/itinerary or other documentation as required by the participating entity.

Communication: NTS will communicate penalties, restrictions, and advance purchase requirements for all reservations to state travelers at the time such reservations are made and with issuance of the ticket and reservation documentation.

Documentation

  • NTS will provide documentation in all Passenger Name Records (PNRs) reflecting the type of reservations booked. This documentation shall consist of the codes established by TPASS to identify refusals of the lowest available fare and the exception conditions set forth in 1, TAC, 125.19(d). The vendor(s) shall provide this documentation to the participating entity on the traveler itinerary for each ticket issued and, if requested, to TPASS.
  • NTS provides delivery of travel documents (only when electronic tickets or ticketless travel are not available) to the location and/or person specified by the participating entity policy at least 24 hours prior to the commencement of scheduled trips, or earlier as required by airline fare rules or as specifically requested by the traveler or participating entity policy. Delivery may be made by the use of delivery services, overnight delivery, or other available methods; and
  • NTS provides emergency delivery of travel documents, whenever possible, within twenty-four (24) hours of receipt of any such request.

RESERVATION OPTIONS:

Online Booking Tool: NTS offers an online booking program that will enable the traveler to select her/his flights and the appropriate airfare. Once the traveler has selected her/his flights, she/he will be able to book and send the reservation(s) to NTS to confirm accuracy and complete the transaction.

Standard Full Service Provisions:

  • NTS provides twenty-four (24) hour services seven days a week;
  • NTS provides a toll-free telephone number;
  • NTS provides Automatic Charge Card Reconciliation Report for all requesting entities;
  • NTS has established a feedback system to receive information from travelers regarding problems and experiences encountered during travel;
  • NTS provides assistance with visa and passport processing, as requested;
  • NTS provides lost and stolen baggage assistance;
  • NTS has dedicated agents, on-site access to a Global Distribution System (GDS) and/or personnel for any requesting participating entity;
  • NTS processes credits and refunds for travel services not utilized.

OTHER SERVICES:

  • National Travel Systems has established a special Hot Line to provide the state's elected and appointed officials with unequaled personal service which will optimize their time in service to the state by making sure their travel experience is as efficient and "hassle-free" as possible. This additional service will be provided to the state at no additional cost.
  • Additionally, NTS is able to offer state travelers with leisure travel services and understands that these services are to be provided at no cost to the state and that travelers cannot book state-negotiated airfares for leisure travel. NTS provides travelers with access to leisure travel products and specially-negotiated rates, which are available to all of NTS's client base, via travel counselors and our website: http://nationaltravelsystems.com/
  • National Travel Systems currently provides on-site access to Sabre Travel Information Network to several state agencies at no charge to the state. NTS will continue to offer this service at no charge to agencies who request such access.
  • Negotiation Assistance for Group Travel: When requested, NTS shall assist in negotiating with travel vendors for any group fares and rates on behalf of the State or participating entity and shall take all actions necessary to book reservations at such fares and rates at no additional cost.

New Participants

For those state agencies/entities NOT currently using National Travel Systems, the travel coordinator would need to contact National Travel Systems to discuss the setup of their state agency and the transition process.

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