American Airlines have agreed to settle a trademark and unfair competition lawsuit with travel agency giant Expedia.
The dispute which was filed by American Airlines in October 2018, was over the online travel agencyÂs ÂAdd-On AdvantageÂ discount hotel program. The airline alleged that ExpediaÂs Add-On Advantage logo infringed their own ÂAAdvantageÂ loyalty programÂs logo and marks and with this, claimed Expedia had breached their agreements with the airline. The Airline sued the online travel agent on five counts: breach of the companiesÂ written agreements, trademark infringement, unfair competition and trademark dilution. However in November last year, Expedia denied any claims of infringement or contract violations in response to the lawsuit.
In 2014, the two companies signed agreements where Expedia was licensed to sell fares on behalf of the airline and promote their AAdvantage program. The airline claimed that under this agreement, Expedia undertook not to Âuse any intellectual property that is confusingly similar to the American marks, including the AAdvantage marksÂ,
Despite this, in June 2018 the travel agency went on to file the registration of two trademarks with the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for its ÂAdd-On AdvantageÂ program, covered by classes 39 and 43.
In response the airline claimed that this was likely to cause confusion amongst consumers over Âthe source, sponsorship, or affiliationÂ of ExpediaÂs ÂAdd-On AdvantageÂ programme. The Airline registered the ÂAAdvantageÂ mark with the USPTO in 1983 and have stated in their complaint: ÂThese marks are assets of incalculable value as symbols of American, its quality goods and services, and its goodwill,Â.
Following the two parties filing a request, the district court ordered that the case be dismissed on December 17 . The terms of the settlement have not yet been publicized however according to the USPTO, both of ExpediaÂs trademark applications for ÂAdd-On AdvantageÂ were withdrawn on December 21st.
Although it is unclear how they settled the matter, both American Airlines and Expedia have seemed to resolve their issues over the dispute.