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GSA City Pair Program Saves Billions for Federal Agencies

More than $2 billion saved annually through governments’ air travel program

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) awarded its Fiscal Year 2018 City Pair Program air travel contracts, which will save the government approximately $2.44 billion next year. Under the GSA City Pair Program, airfare rates for the federal government’s official travel are pre-negotiated and firm-fixed-price, offering a 53 percent discount on comparable commercial fares. In addition to offering considerable discounts, the City Pair Program allows the federal government maximum flexibility in how it books air travel, with benefits including no cancellation or change fees.

“GSA’s ‘Best-in-Class’ City Pair Program is a valuable tool to help us accomplish our goal of helping federal agencies save valuable taxpayer dollars,” said Alan Thomas, GSA’s Federal Acquisition Service Commissioner. “By leveraging the government’s buying power through this strategically-sourced program, we are able to provide simple travel solutions to meet the government's needs while saving taxpayers more than $2.4 billion.”

Eight major U.S. carriers were awarded contracts for FY18. When awarding City Pair contracts to airlines, GSA considers a number of criteria, including availability of non-stop service, total number of flights, flight availability, average elapsed flight time, availability of jet service, and price of service. The 2018 rates will become effective October 1, 2017.

Key Facts

  • GSA’s data-driven analytical approach to managing the program and negotiating with the airlines and carriers drives cost savings and program performance
  • Average domestic fares awarded remained virtually the same at $227 in F18 versus $225 in FY17. Average international fares awarded increased from $724 in FY17 to $742 in FY18
  • The City Pair Program continues its global reach; with 9,207 total markets being awarded, over 100 additional markets this year
  • FY18 utilization of the CPP fares projects an estimate of 16 percent below corporate best in class benchmarked fares and a savings of $391 million against those fares