April 24, 2020
Alexandria, VA, April 24, 2020 – Signature Travel Network has increased its commitment and financial support to the American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) in the most critical time in the industry’s history, providing a key boost to ASTA’s advocacy efforts on behalf of the advisor community before Congress and key decision-makers for coronavirus relief.
The increase to Diamond-level Proud Partner status is more than just monetary support. It propels ASTA’s advocacy work on Capitol Hill forward to lobby key elected officials. It also signals to the traveling public that travel advisors are an instrumental conduit in the industry, which is necessary to save that trusted expertise in the consumer supply chain.
ASTA President & CEO Zane Kerby said, "ASTA’s advocacy, on behalf of the entire travel advisor community, has never been more critical. This additional commitment from Signature Travel Network is extraordinary and greatly appreciated. We thank Alex Sharpe, his team and the entire Signature membership for their leadership.”
Signature President and CEO Alex Sharpe believes ASTA's advocacy role is a necessary "insurance policy" – and is one of the main reasons Signature's Board of Directors decided to increase that support, saying, "We are committed to a long-term partnership with ASTA as we simply won't survive in this business without the work that ASTA does on our behalf."
This is the fifth year Signature has required its membership to maintain an ASTA affiliation. ASTA leverages its unique strength as a national association before the U.S. Congress, the White House, federal agencies and all 50 state legislatures in the fight to keep the retail distribution channel strong and viable after this pandemic loosens its grip.
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.