Institute to tackle UK and EU key issues
The Institute of Travel Management for the UK & Ireland (ITM) has announced it is to increase lobbying efforts on the issues affecting its members.
The ITM's Industry Affairs Group (IAG) will tackle issues such as IATA's PaxIS, Anti-Trust Immunity for airline alliances, and airline and global distribution service (GDS) negotiations.
The Lufthansa Preferred Fares Programme, LOCOG accommodation caps in 2012 and high speed rail investment will also be on the agenda.
Public affairs agency Insight PA has been brought in to help the ITM engage with "key political figures in the UK."
Insight PA has already assisted the ITM in raising the profile of its Project ICARUS CSR initiative within the UK parliament.
The ITM plans to work with Paragon, the umbrella grouping of various national travel managers' associations and the Business Travel Coalition (BTC) on issues outside the UK.
Chris Reynolds, an IAG chair and senior partner of 3SixtySourcing, will bring together the BTC and VDR, the German equivalent of the ITM, to discuss Lufthansa's controversial Preferred Fare Programme.
He will take part in a discussion on the Programme organised by BTC on April 3 in Cologne.
Mr Reynolds said this announcement would "bring real value to the membership" and it was "time to take things more seriously."
"We have tinkered with lobbying before but there are so many issues ahead of us in the next few years which will seriously impact travel and meetings programmes," he added.