26 October 2000
Travel agent associations must come up with guidelines on fees to make it easier for their members to move to a fee-based system, said Lily Agonoy.
“If there is uniformity and unity, it will be easier for agents to administer and gain the acceptance of clients,” she said.
She noted the issue had taken on more urgency with airlines such as Singapore Airlines bringing nett fares into the public.“Before, customers knew agents were making a profit. But now there will be no more rebates and they have to be charged a fee. Now, the agent has to learn to say, “In the past, I rebate you. Now I charge you a fee.”
She predicted that in three to five years time, nett fares will be in the public. “A number of agencies will have to close down. In the US, that has already happened. Travel agents who do not change will have to go.”