Before we start about whether IATA is necessary or not for travel agents, let us give you the brief about what is IATA and who are IATA agents and why this has been established.
What is IATA ?
IATA stands for International Air Transport Association, this is the trade association for the world’s airlines, representing some 290 airlines. IATA supports many areas of aviation activity and help formulate industry policy on critical aviation issues.
Who are IATA agents ?
IATA agents are authorised agents who can issue any airline ticket which is listed on any GDS platform like Amadeus, Galileo, sabre,worldspan etc.. where non IATA agents can create the PNR only on GDS they don’t have ticket issuance rights.
Why IATA is established ?
IATA is a connecting bridge between travel agencies and airlines, IATA manages the payment through BSP (Billing And Settlement Plan) between agencies and airlines. If IATA would not be there then all the travel agencies need to prove their financial capabilities to every airline for issuance of ticket and it would have become difficult for travel agencies as well airline to connect. It is a regulatory body that represent, lead and serve the airline industry. It develops the global commercial standard, sets the rules for safety and security of airlines.
Now we come to the conclusion whether IATA is necessary or not, so I would like to say both yes and no.
YES, IATA is necessary when
if a travel agency wants to crack the good and best deal directly with airline but it is recommended only when agency have good volume business as agency is going to deal the direct deal with airline as in IATA and direct dealing with airline, agency need to prove their financial capability and they need to give IATA a bank guarantee starting from USD 10,000 at initial stage and at very lower amount of bank guarantee only some airline will give you small amount of capping to issue the ticket. If agency wants more capping then they are asked to increase the bank guarantee amount. It can be any amount starting from USD 10, 000 to USD 1 Lakh depending on the volume of tickets.
No, IATA is not necessary when
Travel agencies being a non iata agent still can create the PNR and get the ticket issued from any IATA travel agent. They will part about 90% airline deal with non IATA travel agency who do not want to invest in IATA. Issuing agency is called a supplier or a consolidator in travel jargon. IATA travel agent also get the segment payout from GDS.
If still you have any questions please register at our blog and comment we will be happy to answer all your questions and we can also help you to take IATA if you want. Our next article will be on “How To apply for IATA and Required Document for it” , “What is Segment Payout”, and “who is a consolidator or supplier”.