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Tuesday, 18 September, 2018, 12 : 04 PM [IST]

ETAA celebrates 20th anniversary

Enterprising Travel Agents Association (ETAA) recently held its AGM in Mumbai which was followed by celebration of Association’s 20 years of existence. ETAA started its journey in the year 1998 by few veterans of the industry. The main purpose of the Association was to create a platform for Non-IATA agents to network amongst themselves. Today, ETAA has emerged as one of the largest Non-IATA travel agents association. Meghna Gautam, Chairperson, Mumbai Committee, started the proceeding of the AGM by thanking members who came in large numbers and invited the Board of Directors to the dais. The meeting started with Abhijit Khadilkar, National General Secretary, ETAA, reading the notice and the agenda and all points were unanimously passed in the AGM.

Speaking about the journey, Carl Dantas, Chairman, Emeritus, said that they had started with 30 members and today the organisation has 870 members. “This itself tells our growth story,” he said. Not only that, today ETAA has chapters in the North, East, West and South region, hence covering entire country. Every chapter organises monthly sessions to educate their members. “The subjects of the sessions are diverse right from product to DMC to GST, etc. All such discussions enhance knowledge of our members in various segments. We always emphasise that one has to be innovative to remain in the business,” he said. Dwelling on importance of education Dantas said that it is imperative for every member to educate themselves on constant basis. “Sound product knowledge is extremely important for the growth of business and it is also important to shift in digital media,” he exhorted. Dantas also stressed that it is important to maintain relationship with customers, suppliers, tourism boards, airlines, etc. “I always tell our members that they cannot survive in the business without maintaining a healthy relationship with their customers, suppliers, etc. I am cherishing every moment and that drives me to share my knowledge with them,” he said.

Jagat Mehta, President, ETAA, while speaking to TravelBiz Monitor, said that launch of ETAA itself was a mile stone. “Our sessions in different cities of India. Last year, we organised 21 knowledge sessions. In this AGM, we have decided to conduct more knowledge sessions and educational tours,” Mehta said. Last month, ETAA organised seven-night education tours where 40 members had participated. “We want our members to get educated properly about the place they visit and get firsthand knowledge. Every day, there is check in and check out so that members can experience comfort and service of every hotel they stayed. Based on the experience they can recommend hotels to their customers. We target three and four-star hotels as the demand for such hotels from people of Tier-II and II cities is maximum,” points out Mehta. Social media is another area of focus for ETAA. “We will soon have a knowledge session on social media so that our members can utilise it properly,” said Mehta.

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