Press Releases

07/05/2018 ECTAA is holding its semi-annual meeting in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
The European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Association is meeting with MATTA Incoming Travel Agents to discuss travel trade matters and opportunities of working together

28/02/2018 Safety comes first for coach tourism 
Supporting the efforts of the European Institutions to customise driving and rest time rules for the coach tourism sector, IRU – together with the European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Associations (ECTAA) and the European Tourism Association (ETOA) – highlights safety first in improvements to coach services

09/02/2018 European Court’s ruling confirms need for urgent reform of the special VAT rules for travel agents
In its decision rendered on 8 February 2018, the Court held that travel agents’ supplies to taxable persons have to be taxed under to the special VAT scheme for travel agents and that VAT must be calculated on a sale by sale basis. This creates serious distortions of competition and is wholly impractical.

11/01/2018 ECTAA calls on the EU regulator to effectively protect EU passengers against airline insolvencies
Following the record number of airline failures in 2017, ECTAA calls on the EU Commission to introduce an efficient mechanism to protect EU passengers against airline insolvencies. In the last three months 3 important European airlines, notably Air Berlin, Monarch Airlines and NIKI have ceased operations, leaving many passengers stranded abroad and with no real prospects of claiming refund of unused tickets.

24/10/2017 Expert study airline claim that direct distribution is less expensive 
New evidence shows that inceasing so-called "direct" bookings does not reduce costs for airlines, sugggesting the true motive of some airlines is to curtail consumer access to independent, neutral booking channels. 

19/10/2017 Transport connectivity and multimodal transport key for seamless travel and tourism
Transport connectivity and intermodality are critical success factors for the European Tourism Sector. From a travel agency perspective, a lot still needs to be done to improve connectivity and ensure seamless door-to-door multimodal transport.

11/10/17 Airline consolidation limits competition and reduces consumers choice, study confirms
An independant research report released today shows that airline consolidation decreases consumer choice. The report finds that ariline mergers, acquisitions, joint ventures and code-share agreements have over time contributed to a reduction, fewer choices and higher prices for consumers. 

14/07/2017 Europe Plans Matchmaking to Promote Itself to China and the USA
Europe is planning a programme of educational conferences and matchmaking events to promote itself as a tourist destination to some of the world’s most important outbound travel markets. The programme, named Partnerships in European Tourism, will see a series of eight conferences and business-to-business matchmaking events, taking place within the EU and in the target markets of China and the USA.

07/06/17 ECTAA calls the EU regulator to effectively enforce EU legislation on Air Services and take appropriate measures to protect the EU consumer
Following the IAG’s recent announcement to apply the 9.5 EUR charge to British Airways/Iberia tickets booked via GDS, ECTAA condemns this decision and calls the EU regulator to take appropriate steps to protect the neutral and transparent access to air fares

31/05/2017 European travel agents’ and tour operators’ associations exploring colourful Coimbra
ECTAA, the European Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators, has been invited to hold its semi-annual meeting in the beautiful Coimbra city in Centre of Portugal on 31 May to 2 June. A delegation of 70 CEOs and Presidents of travel agents and travel agents’ associations will come to Coimbra to obtain up-to-date industry, government affairs and legal developments impacting the European travel industry.

11/05/2017 Implementation of the Package Travel Directive - Steering through troubled waters? 
Brussels, 11/05/2017 - Industry and European legislators meet in Brussels today to discuss the implementation of the new package travel Directive. The new law is meant to provide further protection to consumers buying traditional or dynamic packages (packages put together by the customer) but also combinations of travel services.

10/03/2017 Malaysia selected as ECTAA’s Preferred Destination for 2018.
The European travel agents’ and tour operators’ Association will cooperate closely with Tourism Malaysia to boost European outbound tourism to Malaysia in 2018. A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been signed between Malaysia Tourism Promotion Board (Tourism Malaysia) and the European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Associations (ECTAA) on 9 March 2017 at the International Tourism Fair ITB in Berlin, Germany.

13/12/2016 Call for a new model to govern indirect air distribution
The Travel Agent Community met with IATA Director General to discuss the modernization of the rules governing the indirect air distribution. Today’s IATA Passenger Agency Programme is no longer fit for purpose as it does not optimally address the broad and varied needs of all the stakeholders within the distribution chain.

09/12/16 ECTAA welcomes EU-China tourism engagement
ECTAA welcomes the designation of 2018 as the year of EU-China tourism, which will help foster travel and tourism between the two regions.
The 2018 EU-China Year of Tourism was signed by Mr Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission and Mr Li Keqiang, Premier of the State Council of the People's Republic of China, at the opening of the EU-China summit on 12 July 2016.

05/12/2016 Tunisia welcomes European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ Association in Tunis
On 1-2 December, the European Travel Agents’ and Tour Operators’ association –ECTAA- held its semi-annual meeting in Tunisia. The meeting was attended by more than 20 European delegations.
ECTAA, has met for the first time in Tunis on the invitation of its International Member, the Tunisian Federation of Travel Agents, FTAV. This was an opportunity to exchange views and take stock of the work that has been undertaken by the Tunisian government as well as the industry to welcome back European tourists in Tunisia.

26/05/2016 Commissionner Violeta BULC speaks about EU’s vision for transport and importance for tourism
Following the adoption of the EU Aviation Strategy in December 2015, a package of legislative measures will be adopted by the Commission in the coming years in order to boost the competitiveness of the EU airlines. Commissioner for Transport Violeta BULC presented the key initiatives that will also have an impact on tourism at the ECTAA General Assembly held in Ljubljana, Slovenia this 26th May 2016.

25/05/2016 Spotlight on Slovenia 
From 25 to 28 May the European Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators will meet in the European Green Capital 2016, Ljubljana. This is part of the Preferred Destination agreement signed with the Slovenian Tourist Board to help promote Slovenia through the travel agency network

14/04/2016 Next step in the EU Data Revolution – Plenary Vote on the EU PNR Directive and Data Protection Package
The EU Parliament adopted the EU PNR Directive and the Data Protection Package during the Plenary Session on 14th April 2016 in Strasbourg. It is a strong signal that EU data protection system will change for good 

15/03/2016 Europe's Tourism Sector calls on the LIBE Committee to adopt a smart Schengen Visa Package
The Network for the European Private Sector in Tourism, which gathers the main travel and tourism and trade associations in Europe, is calling on the European Parliament’s Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs Committee (LIBE) to adopt a smart Schengen Visa package.

16/12/15 Travel and tourism sector unites behind Tourism for Growth and Jobs Manifesto 
For the first time ever, Europe’s public and private tourism actors have come together to call for the European Union to do more for this important industry. Published to coincide with the European Tourism Day on Wednesday 16th December, the Tourism for Growth and Jobs Manifesto highlights the key EU policy priorities for the sector in the coming years on topics ranging from skills and qualifications to sustainability and competitiveness of Europe’s tourism.

15/10/15 NET calls for policies that foster the competitiveness of the European tourism industry during a meeting with Commissioner Bieńkowska.
A NET delegation comprising high level representatives from the European Private Sector in Tourism met with EU Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs Bieńkowska to discuss the main challenges and opportunities within the tourism sector.

17/09/2015 Europe's tourism stakeholders call on EU Member States to implement a smarter EU Visa Code
CLIA Europe and ECTAA highlight economic advantages of liberalising the Visa Regime for the Schengen Area. Both associations have called on the EU to bring more flexibility to the EU Visa Code in order to facilitate the entry of legitimate tourists and travellers from third countries into Europe whilst maintaining the current high level of security.

24/07/2015 ECTAA files a formal complaint against Lufthansa AG concerning the announced new Distribution Cost Charge
This 24th July 2015, ECTAA filed a formal complaint with the EU Commission - Directorate General for Mobility & Transport, based on the EU Regulation N° 80/2009 on a Code of Conduct for Global Distribution Systems, GDSs. 

17/06/15 Tourism industry needs certainty more than ever about the upcoming VAT reform in Greece
As one of the main players of the tourism supply chain, the European tour operators’ and travel agents’ association is calling on the negotiating parties for the Greek bailout programme to adopt a swift decision on the future VAT rates for tourism services in Greece and implement any changes gradually to avoid a ripple effect on Greek’s tourism, the backbone of the Greek economy

02/06/15 Lufthansa’s new commercial strategy- Another air fare increase for the EU traveller
This 2nd June 2015, the Lufthansa Group announced that as from 1st September 2015, all LH Group Airlines will introduce a new cost charge of 16 EUR for every ticket issued by travel agents via GDSs. More than ever, the EU traveller should be able to rely on neutral and impartial advice of travel agents to find his way in the jungle of airline fares, charges, fuel surcharges and other ancillaries.

26/05/2015 Commissioner Bienkowska sets out EU tourism strategy
Ms. Elżbieta Bieńkowska, European Commissioner for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs of the European Commission addressed the General Assembly of ECTAA and set out her visions on the future European strategy

12/01/2015 Final Landing of Cyprus Airways; ECTAA recalls the pressing need for a scheme protecting air passengers across the EU
On Friday 9. January 2015, the Board of Cyprus Airways decided to suspend operations following the order of the European Commission (DG Competition) to recover incompatible state aid from the national air carrier.

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