WTAAA Urges IATA to Include Travel AgentsJune 27, 2012 By: Newswire Travel Agent
Seeking regulatory review and travel agency involvement in airline distribution policy, the World Travel Agents Associations Alliance (WTAAA) sent a letter to Aleks Popovich, senior vice president, Industry Distribution and Financial Services at the International Air Transport Association (IATA), requesting IATA action.
WTAAA wants regulatory review of its new “standards-setting” initiative, called New Distribution Capability (NDC), and that IATA include the travel agency distribution channel, through WTAAA, on all related committees and task forces.
“IATA has the unique challenge of developing a standard that that will not be seen by regulators as having the potential to skew the competitive process,” said WTAAA Chair Peter Barlow. “We urge IATA to have its newly announced initiative reviewed by regulatory agencies to ensure the initiative is designed to produce pro-competitive standards that will benefit the entire distribution system, not just IATA’s airline members."
“The travel agency distribution system sells nearly 60 percent of global air tickets. Therefore, it’s imperative that our voices be heard,” said Barlow. “Further, as the global association whose members represent more than 70 percent of all agency issued tickets worldwide, it’s appropriate that WTAAA have a seat at the table.”
WTAAA has invited Popovich to speak with its members at its annual general assembly Sept. 10-12, 2012 in Washington, D.C.
WTAAA is the global travel agency voice through the exchange of ideas and information. Members include the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA), Association of Canadian Travel Agencies (ACTA), Association of South African Travel Agents (ASATA), Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA), Brazilian Association of Travel Agencies (ABAV), European Travel Agents' and Tour Operators' Associations (ECTAA), Travel Agents' Association of New Zealand (TAANZ) and Travel Agency Federation of India (TAFI).