New ASTA CEO makes pitch to airlines
MIAMI ? Zane Kerby, two months into his position as president and CEO of ASTA, told delegates attending UATP?s Airline Distribution Conference that there?s an opportunity for agents and airlines to do business.
Kerby said that travel agents sell $136 billion annually, and that ASTA members account for 81% of those sales.
ASTA also owns the National Association of Career Travel Agents, a trade group for independent agents. Kerby said that there are 40,000 independent agents who do $9 billion in business annually, according to PhoCusWright.
The two agency groups represent opportunity for airlines, Kerby said, especially with discretionary income back at the pre-recession level.
He said that ASTA can help connect airlines with agents and that it has other resources for airlines, including its research and TravelSense.org, its consumer website.
Zerby invited airlines executives at the conference to attend the ASTA Global Convention in Miami from Sept. 17-19. He noted that former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will be the keynote speaker.