ASTA President and CEO Zane Kerby issues the following statement in response to the FAA reauthorization extension legislation unveiled today and expected to be signed into law later this week:
“On behalf of ASTA and the more than 100,000 Americans who work at travel agencies across the country, we applaud the leadership of Congressional transportation committees, including Senators Thune and Nelson and Representatives Shuster and DeFazio, for their quick action to pass an extension of the FAA’s funding authority through the end of Fiscal Year 2017.
“In particular we want to thank these policymakers for listening to the views of ASTA and its members and not imposing new and unwarranted disclosure obligations on the agency community. These would have presented massive new costs to our members, ranging from reprogramming systems, to training staff, to ‘talk time’ and opportunity costs from lost sales.
“Consumer advocacy and protection is at the heart of what ASTA member travel agents do each and every day. FAA reauthorization was a top priority during our Legislative Day held on March 15th, where ASTA members met with over 70 Members of Congress and their staffs. We look forward to working with Congress in the next FAA reauthorization cycle to create a policy framework where consumers are fully protected in the travel marketplace and have access to the comparison shopping, unbiased advice, destination expertise and personal support that only an ASTA agent can provide.”
ASTA (American Society of Travel Agents) 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, it is the leading global advocate for travel agents, the travel industry and the traveling public. ASTA’s history of travel 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, visit ASTA.org.
ASTA’s sister association, The National Association of Career Travel Agents, represents a professional community of independent travel agents ready to assist the traveling public.