January 24, 2018
Alexandria, VA, January 24, 2018 – Zane Kerby, President & CEO of the American Society of Travel agents (ASTA) releases the following statement in response to reports that Marriott International will reduce the commissions it pays to group and meetings intermediaries from 10 to 7 percent, effective March 31, 2018:
“While we are in the process of assessing the impact of Marriott’s announcement on our members’ businesses, we are disappointed in the signal that a cut of this magnitude sends to the broader agency community. Travelers – individuals and groups, corporate and leisure – are relying now more than ever on trusted agents to help them sort through a multitude of travel options and get the best value for their travel dollar. In our view, a 30 percent cut in intermediary compensation diminishes the value of the role agents play in this complex and ever-changing industry. We plan to discuss this change with Marriott, our agency and consortia members and other stakeholders with an eye toward ensuring positive business outcomes for all involved.”
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.