ASTA joined the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) today in opposition to a proposed increase in the UK Air Passenger Duty. The tax, while expected to add £2.8 billion ($4.4 billion) in additional taxes to UK government coffers, is also forecast to dampen the demand for travel and ultimately would harm not only the UK economy but also those countries to which the British travel most frequently, including the United States and Caribbean nations.
“ASTA really put together an amazing experience” was a phrase echoed by those who attended ASTA’s seventh International Destination Expo (IDE), in Lima, Peru. The event brought together travel professionals from around the world for in-depth training and education on the culture, unique tourist attractions and travel business of Lima and Peru. Through this one-of-a-kind event, travel agents returned home equipped with business tools, personal experiences and local connections that will enable them to grow their agencies.
In coordination with the White House Office of the First Lady Michelle Obama and Dr. Jill Biden’s Joining Forces Veterans Hiring Initiative, the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) is pleased to announce the creation of the Joining Forces Travel Industry Coalition.
ASTA today praised U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson (D-GA) for introducing H.R. 4032, the Help Entrepreneurs Create American Jobs Act of 2012, which would amend the Internal Revenue Service Code of 1986 and increase the tax cut for start-up businesses in their first year of operation.
ASTA today announced that Eben Peck has been hired to the position of vice president, Government Affairs, for the Society. As part of his new job, Peck will be responsible for all of ASTA’s state and federal and state lobbying efforts, as well as its political action committee, ASTAPAC.
Today, ASTA released the results of its 2011 Global Distribution System (GDS) Report, a 63-page study designed to assist agencies in evaluating their current GDS contracts and help industry suppliers gain insight into the travel agency distribution channel.
Tony Gonchar, ASTA CEO, praised steps taken today by President Barak Obama to elevate travel and tourism to a fuller role in rebuilding the United States economy.
ASTA has filed comments with the Department Transportation (DOT) in response to its Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) entitled “Nondiscrimination on the Basis of Disability in Air Travel: Accessibility of Web Sites and Automated Kiosks at U.S. Airports,” which addresses the issue of making websites accessible for people with disabilities.
ASTA released the results of its exclusive 2011 Technology and Web Usage Report, which found that a substantial number of travel agents are using elements of Web 2.0 to enhance their networking and marketing efforts.
Attendees will have the unique opportunity to experience two of Lima’s most iconic venues during the course of ASTA’s one-of-a-kind International Destination Expo (IDE) (March 1-4, 2012), showcasing the cuisine and culture of this year’s host city, Lima, Peru.