Virtuoso to Reimburse Agents for ASTA Membership Dues
In an announcement that further highlights Virtuoso's support of the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA), the luxury travel agency network plans to reimburse ASTA membership dues for its affiliated agencies in 2015.
According to a press release on Thursday, Virtuoso will repay as much as $736 per agency, which will cover "membership dues for up to 85 percent of its agencies and subsidize the majority of dues for the others."
The ultimate goal is to generate a stronger and more unified voice within the travel agency community.
The more than five dozen Virtuoso agencies that are currently ASTA members will receive reimbursement for their dues. In turn, these agencies will have the option of investing their money in ASTA’s Political Action Committee. Participation isn't mandatory, but the overwhelming expectation among the two organizations is that by providing a financial incentive for agencies, the total number of shared memberships (Virtuoso and ASTA) will rise.
"Zane Kerby and ASTA are doing good work," said Virtuoso chairman and CEO Matthew D. Upchurch in a statement. "Our community needs a unified voice when it comes to tackling industry-wide issues, especially on Capitol Hill, and I know they are committed to that cause."
Upchurch explained that the reason why his network has gone this route to support ASTA is "because of its agency and travel advisor advocacy."
"The more agencies that are involved, the louder our collective voice becomes," said Upchurch.
It's worth pointing out that Upchurch has previous experience serving on the ASTA’s Corporate Advisory Council.
"Virtuoso has a long history of ardently supporting the entire travel agency community, be it through dedicated PR efforts to educate consumers on the benefits of using a travel advisor, or now with a financial contribution to ASTA," said ASTA president and CEO Zane Kerby.
"Virtuoso’s strong endorsement is a tremendous boost to our organization. With the help of Virtuoso, we’ll garner support from more agencies and speak with a more powerful, unified voice to important legislators and regulators at the federal and state level."
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