April 5, 2017
Site Provides One-Stop Shopping for Critical Travel Information for Agency Clients
The American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) is praising the U.S. Department of State for its recent launch of a dedicated travel agency website with useful resources for agencies and their clients in an effort to better prepare agents to assist clients before and during their international travel.
“ASTA commends the State Department for creating this resource for agencies and their clients and for recognizing the critical role that travel agents play in today’s travel ecosystem,” said Zane Kerby, ASTA President & CEO. “We look forward to building on our strong relationship with the State Department’s leadership to use this and other resources to ensure that Americans traveling abroad are informed and protected before, during and after their trips.”
From U.S. Department of State:
"According to industry reports, in 2016, over 20% of the traveling U.S. public turned to travel professionals to book their international trips. By creating this targeted site with a compilation of commonly searched information at the agent’s fingertips, we hope that our tips for safe and secure travel will reach a wider audience of U.S. citizens going on an international trip." - Ogniana Ivanova-Sriram, Outreach Officer at the Bureau of Consular Affairs, U.S. Department of State.
The site (https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/go/travel-agents.html) was established by the State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs, which is responsible for the welfare and protection of U.S. citizens abroad, for the issuance of passports and other documentation to citizens and nationals, and for the protection of U.S. border security and the facilitation of legitimate travel to the United States. The site addresses some of the most important issues that may arise during travel from the U.S., will assist travel agencies in better handling their U.S. clients’ travel needs before and during their trip. These include information on passports, preparing for a trip abroad, emergency assistance while traveling, and additional resources related to customs restrictions, issues specific to cruise passengers and federal trusted traveler programs such as TSA PreCheck and Customs’ Global Entry.
Rebranded in 2018 as the American Society of Travel Advisors, ASTA is the leading global advocate for travel advisors, the travel industry and the traveling public. Its members represent 80 percent of all travel sold in the United States through the travel agency distribution channel. Together with hundreds of internationally-based members, ASTA’s history of industry advocacy traces back to its founding in 1931 when it launched with the mission to facilitate the business of selling travel through effective representation, shared knowledge and the enhancement of professionalism. For more information about the Society, visit ASTA.org. Consumers can connect with an ASTA travel advisor at TravelSense.org.