Global distribution system Amadeus is to offer travel agents booking capability for theatre and attraction tickets and restaurants.

According to senior figures within Amadeus the upgrade is to come in the near future and is part of the GDS’s bid to attract more small independent travel agencies.

Director of marketing Elaine Seeto claimed the GDS has attracted 50 new small independent agencies in the past six months, increasing Amadeus UK’s market share to 28%.

A recent Amadeus study of small independent agencies in the UK found that access to a range of content from a single source was a key business requirement.

“We’ve have been successful with independent travel agencies because the solutions we offer address their needs,” said Seeto.

Amadeus is also piloting its new multi-media hotel-booking platform with a small number of business travel agents. It will introduce the technology across its customer base in September.

According to UK managing director Stephane Durand Amadeus Hotel Plus is a further move away from the traditional ‘green screen’ system.

Amadeus Hotel Plus includes images of all the properties and geo-coding for each, to enable consultants and travellers to plot the hotels on a map and find similar properties in the same area.

Amadeus Hotel Plus is aimed at the corporate market, but the GDS is conducting research in the leisure sector and plans tie-ups with leisure bed banks.

Durand also said Amadeus planned to release its UK rail booking engine for business travellers in the first quarter of 2008.

The technology, which will include seat and coach maps, can be integrated into Amadeus self-booking tools or act as a stand-alone product.