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National Association of Career Travel Agents

NACTA finds travel agents prefer to be called travel consultants

NACTA will now use the term Travel Consultants when referring to its membership. NACTA also informally surveyed its members and found they prefer not to be referred to as “home-based agents”.

ALEXANDRIA, VA. – The National Association of Career Travel Agents (NACTA) reports that Travel Agents prefer to be called Travel Consultants through a recent member survey and the results are consistent with their parent company ASTAs findings.

NACTA research conducted December 2013- January 2014 indicates nearly half of the 1,281 respondents want to be called Travel Consultant. The question was posed: “As a professional who sells travel, what do you prefer to be referenced as?” The responses showed 47.7% prefer to be called a Travel Consultant, 23.9% selected Travel Professional, 12.7%  Travel Agent, 7.5% Travel Advisor and 4.3% Travel Expert and 3.9% selected “Other”.

ASTA’s survey last fall posed the question: “For front-line agents or agents who deal directly with clients, which title do you believe corresponds best to their role (select one)?” Out of 282 participants in the survey, 54% selected Travel Consultant, 11% Travel Agent, 22% Travel Professional, 10% Travel Advisor and 2% selected “Other”.  

As a result of the findings, NACTA will now use the term Travel Consultants when referring to its membership. NACTA also informally surveyed its members and found they prefer not to be referred to as “home-based agents”.   

“The term home-based agent is irrelevant now as technology and personal relationships have changed how and where Travel Consultants are able to conduct business”, said Ann van Leeuwen, President of NACTA “It is not important to label where travel consultants might do business what’s important is being good at what you do-selling travel and servicing your clients to the best of your ability.”

One year ago, NACTA increased its membership criteria by requiring members to carry E+O insurance obtained on their own or through their host agency. This was done in an effort to grow the membership with professional travel consultants and to recognize the professionalism of the current members. NACTA also requires an industry approved booking identification number.

NACTA represents quality travel professionals. Members have access to many benefits which help them to grow their business. Some of these benefits include resources for branding and marketing their business, a chapter system for community support, industry education, supplier product knowledge forums and NACTA NEWS updates & alerts to keep travel agents knowledgeable and informed. NACTA offers community and professional development for the career travel consultant.

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She holds a Bachelor's degree in Communication & Mass Media from Panteion University of Political & Social Studies of Athens and she has been editor and editor-in-chief in various economic magazines and newspapers.

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