The American Society of Travel Agents Kenya Chapter is the Kenya segment of ASTA – the world's largest association of travel professionals.



ASTA - Kenya Chapter

3rd wood Avenue - Kilimani
P O Box 15976-00100, Nairobi


Tel: +254 202710462

Tel: +254 202710465
Tel: +254 774466152



Travel Agent Business Trends

What is the history of commission cuts and how are travel agents adjusting to them?

After decades of offering travel agents a standard commission of at least 10 percent with no cap, many of the larger airline carriers in the United States stopped paying base commissions to travel agents, beginning in March 2002. ASTA sees the elimination of base payments to agents on the part of air carriers as anti-consumer and as a missed business opportunity. Consumers value the services and unbiased expertise offered by professional agents who represent an impartial source of information for travelers. Travel agents have and will survive in the new marketplace, because consumers know the value they provide.

While there has been contraction and consolidation of brick-and-mortar travel agencies, the number of travel agents has remained fairly steady. Some travel agencies have grown and improved their businesses through new business practices. For example, many travel agencies have focused on providing an increased value to their customers by becoming experts or specialists in certain types of travel or specific destinations. Some agencies have implemented new services that add value to client transactions, such as tracking of frequent flyer accounts or discounted upgrades.

Do travel agents charge service fees? How much? How has this changed?

Most do charge fees. Since 1998, the number of agencies charging service fees on one or more product line has increased from 64 percent to more than 91% percent in 2009. The most common fee charged is a service fee for airline ticket procurement services. On average, ASTA travel agencies charge their customers $36 for providing this service. Agencies also often charge fees for other services such as trip research, Amtrak, car rental and hotel-only reservations.

What percentage of airline tickets, rental cars, cruises and hotel rooms are sold by travel agents?

When it comes to booking travel, travel agents are experienced professionals. Travel agents sell:

  • 85 percent of cruises
  • 70 percent of all tours and packages
  • 50 percent of all airline tickets
  • 30 percent of all hotels
  • 25 percent of all car rentals

Source: 2008 PhoCusWright Travel Agency Distribution Landscape Report

How do travel agents use the Internet?

The Internet has become an integral part of almost every travel agency. It has become more than just a research tool, it has become a business-to-business booking tool.

What is the average salary of a travel agent?

In May 2008, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average annual compensation was $30,570.