The American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA), established in 1931, is the world’s largest and most influential travel agency trade association, representing more than 8,000 members in more than 140 countries. ASTA is committed to upholding the professionalism and profitability of its members through effective representation, education and training, and by identifying and meeting the needs of the traveling public. Members include travel agencies and agents, suppliers, tour operators, hotels, car rental firms, travel schools and future travel professionals.
In 2011, the U.S. travel agency industry, which includes Online Travel Agents (OTA), Travel Management Companies (TMC), traditional retail travel agencies and independent travel agents, produced $136 Billion in travel sales. Air sales accounted for $82 Billion or 60 percent of the total air market. [ARC, PhoCusWright]
The U.S. travel agency industry: operates over 13,500 retail locations; has a total payroll output of $5.6 Billion; employs 83,290 workers; plus, provides income for an additional 40,280 self-employed independent travel agents. [ARC, Bureau of Labor Statistics, PhoCusWright]
ASTA member agencies produce 78% of total agency sales in the U.S.