Underscoring the importance to travel agents of new Department of Transportation (DOT) rules, set to go into effect on Jan. 24 and Jan. 26, ASTA is offering an on-demand webcast free to all travel professionals.
The webcast, entitled “The Six Critical Things Your Must Know About DOT’s Consumer Rules #2,” is presented by ASTA’s John Pitman, vice president of industry affairs. The webcast outlines the pending DOT rules that will govern how fares and fees must be advertised.
ASTA notes that the new rules could result in significant fines for non-compliance.
“While several of the DOT’s fare rules became effective in August 2011, the rules that may have the most dramatic impact on an agency become effective later this month,” said ASTA CEO Tony Gonchar.
“These rules will significantly impact the regulatory environment in which travel agencies operate, and failure to comply could result in substantial penalties. To ensure that travel professionals are fully educated on and able react to these new rules, ASTA is opening up what is usually reserved only for its membership to the entire industry," Gonchar said.
In early 2011, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) introduced new rules designed to enhance passenger rights and to improve the air travel environment for consumers, ASTA said.
"Depending on an agency’s business model, some of these rules, namely those pertaining to full-fare advertising, baggage fee disclosures and restrictions on post-purchase price increases, may have a profound effect on a travel agency business and require agencies to make fundamental systems and programming changes and to train front-line employees," ASTA said.