handshake  © Stokkete |
© Stokkete

More than two decades on from KLM Cargo’s calamitous efforts to bypass forwarders, it seems airlines are again considering this. An anonymous head of cargo at an airfreight carrier told Air Cargo News a convergence of factors had led the airline to prepare for direct engagement with shippers. The chief deciding factor, said the cargo head, was shippers’ needs to curtail costs and the evolution of tools that facilitate direct dealings with airlines – presumably booking platforms. But that only solves the airport-to-airport stretch. And if not all airlines decide to sell direct, it could come at some cost.