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Airlines say reservations system down briefly

Posted: September 12, 2012 - 12:00am

DALLAS— American Airlines and Southwest Airlines say that customers encountered problems booking flights on Tuesday because of a glitch in their reservations systems.

Both airlines said Tuesday that the problem was fixed quickly, and they blamed it on Sabre Holding Corp., which provides reservations-systems technology to airlines. Sabre confirmed the accounts.

“Our customers experienced difficulties accessing Sabre for a short period today, however access has been restored and the system is back on line,” said Sabre spokeswoman Nancy St. Pierre. She said that the company regretted the inconvenience.

American Airlines spokesman Matt Miller said the outage lasted about 45 minutes and was fixed shortly after noon EDT. Miller said the outage affected all airlines and travel agencies that use Sabre, a former part of American that was spun off into a separate company in 2000.

Southwest tweeted that the problem had been fixed. Frontier Airlines and Alaska Airlines said they too experienced brief outages in their Sabre-run systems. United Airlines, Delta Air Lines and US Airways said they use other technology providers and were not affected

Henry Harteveldt, who tracks airlines for Atmosphere Research Group, said he heard from two travel agents who also use Sabre technology and were back in operation after a brief breakdown.

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