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The Travel Institute designates 2016 as ‘The Year of the Travel Professional’

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Year-long promotion focuses on key sales and management skills, plus hands-on PR support.

FRAMINGHAM, MA – The Travel Institute, the architect and engine behind the industry’s well-known certifications, such as Certified Travel Associate (CTA), Certified Travel Counselor (CTC), and Certified Travel Industry Executive (CTIE), has declared 2016 as “The Year of the Travel Professional.” The organization will tie all its major print and digital communications to this full year of new and refreshed webinars, promotional events, and training opportunities designed for dedicated travel professionals of all experience levels.

According to Chief Operating Officer Diane Petras, CMP, CTIE, The Travel Institute has long been the champion of the travel professional and the new campaign represents the non-profit organization’s firm belief in the viability and value of individuals who advance their careers and expertise.

“The Travel Institute has been setting the gold standard in travel education for more than 50 years,” said Petras. “But in 2016 we will take that commitment to an even higher level by offering an innovative collection of diverse learning experiences that will clearly differentiate the dedicated travel professional from the travel ‘hobbyist’, and one that helps position those professionals as experts in the eyes of their clients.”

The year-long campaign is based on a two-pronged approach: skills-based training to expand one’s sales, marketing, and management/leadership expertise; and a public relations primer designed to help individuals effectively promote that expertise to a variety of audiences.

Quarterly themes will focus on four distinct areas, with the initial offering kicking off in February with “Advice from the Experts,” a 10-week webinar training series for those new to the travel industry. Registration details are available at thetravelinstitute.com. The webinars are free to members of The Travel Institute and $19.99 per session for non-members. Other quarterly topics in 2016 include management/leadership and public relations.

As part of “The Year of the Travel Professional” in the first quarter, The Travel Institute will design new press materials for CTA, CTC, and CTIE graduates. PR support will also be available for those graduates, advising them on how to effectively use the press materials and promote their new certification. Basic and premium members will have access to a new monthly marketing tips page in the members-only lounge of The Travel Institute’s website. In addition, the third annual Promote Your Professionalism month in July will include an expanded focus on consumer PR.

“Travel agents have proven their resiliency and today are experiencing a renewed respect for their profession. But today’s consumer is also of a different mindset than in the past and is more discerning – and probably even more demanding – in who they deal with and what they want. Knowledge gained from The Year of the Travel Professional as well as credentials earned and other training from The Travel Institute are essential steps in setting yourself on a path to success and apart from the competition,” said Petras.
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