ASTA Releases Independent advisors Research ReportPress Releases - News - ASTA

August 16, 2016

Contact: Erika Richter

ASTA Releases Independent advisors Research Report

Alexandria, Va., August 16, 2016 – The American Society of Travel Advisors (ASTA) today released the 2016 edition of its Independent advisors Report. The report, based on second half 2015 survey data from members of ASTA’s sister association the National Association of Career Travel agents (NACTA), provides invaluable insight into trends in the operations, host agency and franchise relationships, GDS usage, commission structures and sales and revenue data within the independent advisors community.
“At 20,000 and growing, the independent advisor community is a critical part of our industry and understanding how they run their businesses is top of mind for host agencies and suppliers alike,” said Zane Kerby, ASTA President & CEO. “This collaborative effort between ASTA’s Research Department and NACTA members will give industry stakeholders the tools they need to grow their businesses in our ever-changing industry.”
Key insights of the report include:

  • NACTA member agents pointed to commission split/level, supplier relationships and reputation as the top factors that go into choosing a host agency.​​​​
  • Among independent advisor, direct GDS usage is rare. Rather, NACTA members primarily use supplier websites and phone calls to book travel for their clients.​
  • Six in ten NACTA member agents reported increased sales and revenues in 2015 compared to 2014, indicating improved business trends since 2011.​​
  • NACTA member agents, on average, possess 16 years of industry experience.
  • Over four in ten independent advisors (44%) are hiring either employees or engaging independent contractors to catch up with travel demand post-recession.

“As the independent advisor community continues to grow, industry suppliers are allocating more resources trying to better engage these travel sellers,” said Ann Chamberlin, NACTA President and ASTA Senior Vice President, Operations. “Whether you are a host agency owner, full service travel agency, independent advisor or a supplier, you will find in this report invaluable data and survey results to help you with your day-to-day decision making.”
The 47-page report is available for purchase by ASTA/NACTA members (with a discounted member price) and non-members at For all ASTA research inquiries, please contact Kevin Wang, ASTA’s Director of Research and Industry Affairs, at

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 Consumers can connect with an ASTA travel advisor at

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