Dubai Calling


Preparations are well under way for the Association of Southern African Travel Agents (ASATA) annual conference, which takes place in Dubai from 23-25 August.

This year the conference will be hosted by the 5-star JW Marriott Marquis. Elevated above Dubai’s business district, this is the world’s tallest hotel, offering a myriad of taste sensations with its ten restaurants, four bars and two lounges. Dubai itself is a city of awe-inspiring ambition and unsurpassed luxury. Delegates can look forward to various business panel discussions, which will feature key opinion leaders, with the directive to deliberate on critical issues currently affecting our industry.

ASATA has secured the attendance of IATA’s (International Air Transport Association) Senior Vice-President, Aleks Popovich, who will address conference delegates on IATA’s New Distribution Capability (NDC). This will provide the ideal platform on which to engage with members of the Southern African travel industry, with the aim to dispel any misconceptions.

Off the back of this presentation, Popovich, together with Lars Thykier, the Chairman of the World Travel Agents Association Alliance (WTAAA), which represents the global travel agency community, will engage delegates in discussions on the subject.

In the spirit of collaboration and recognising the need for more effective and enhanced communication between IATA and the South African travel trade, a further panel, with representation from IATA’s office in Amman, Jordan, as well as other industry representatives, will converse on the issue of IATA’s Industry Settlement Systems, which includes Billing and Settlement Plan (BSP) matters, such as Agency Debit Memos (ADMs). 

In addition, the conference programme will include presentations on a variety of topics, including one on an exclusive default insurance product for ASATA members. The insurance product would look to compensate the insured in the event the travel agent or its supplier fail to fulfil their contractual obligations.

With a clear aim to deliver results, we assure our members that we have sourced relevant speakers, who in addition to inspiring delegates, will reaffirm our key message of Compliance, Consensus and Confidence. 

ASATA – the hub of your travel business.

Otto de Vries