Many years ago before the commission caps, I submitted a thesis for my CTC [Certified Travel Counselor] titled “Airline: Friend or Foe.” Basically, it was to alert agents that there were consolidators, and ethic fares that would be new to agents. The consolidators at the time could not sell, domestic, cars, cruises but only basic fares that they negotiated.
The thesis was not to alarm the airlines but to help agents realize that we were in a unique position to sell the world and not just pieces. Well the subject was denied due to the fact that CTC did not want to put focus on the airlines in a “bad light” when all I wanted to do was to let agents know that they could start selling ethnic fares out there.
Now consolidators are able to sell anything they can negotiate and the agents are fighting for survival. ARC [Airlines Reporting Corporation] indicates it cannot service/sell air, but they can sell insurance, visas, passports and try to raise our fees. Why not just get the lowest fares possible to the legit agents who are members of ARC and then divide the membership up to brick and mortar, outside agents, hosts and cost according for the dues?
I have not given too much thought of the sections for ARC but think it is a lot better than all the other stuff they are pushing, especially since they can do the reporting directly to each of the member airlines. But then again, that might be against airline policies.. ARC cannot negotiate fares, but they can collect debit memos for the airlines. [It] does not seem fair.
–Pati Gee, CTC