The American largest association of travel agents and tourism industry ASTA is planning to hold a congress in Bulgaria

30 March 2016

The American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) is planning to hold one of its traditional events in Bulgaria. This became clear at a meeting of the Minister for Tourism, Nikolina Angelkova, and the Chief Executive Officer of the organisation, Zane Kerby, in Washington. ASTA is the most influential association of the American travel industry (with 10 thousand members from 140 countries) and annual events like ‘ASTA Destination Expo’ and ‘Showcase Destination’ are extremely visited and popular.

Bulgaria can host one of the editions of ‘Showcase Destination’ in 2017. For this reason about 200 representatives of leading American tour operators will arrive in the country, said Zane Kerby. The aim of the event, which is traditional for the association, is to advertise the possibilities for tourism in America outside of the U. S., laying emphasis on the tourist advantages of the host country and the region. The event will also become an occasion for establishing business contacts and exchange of know-how between leading Bulgarian and Amerian tour operators.

Earlier in the day, Minister Angelkova discussed the possibilities for exchange of experience and good practices between the two states with the Deputy Undersecretary for International Trade at the U.S. Department of Commerce, Kenneth Hyatt, in the capital Washington. The main topic of conversation was the Brand USA and the US concept of promoting a country as a tourist destination through public-private partnership with the tourist business.

Minister Angelkova emphasised that our country could draw experience and after a subsequent analysis, apply a part of the practices in Bulgaria as well. Her American counterpart undertook to provide detailed information and the USA to assist us with expertise for development of working models. Both of them shared the opinion that to be able to apply successfully the model of public-private partnership, the industry needs to be consolidated so that the state can have a clear partner. ‘We work hard to unite the industry, which will help create a sustainable platform for a similar type of partnerships’, Minister Angelkova explained. She familiarised her American counterpart with other important projects in the field of tourism, such as the development of the Unified System of Tourist Information that will connect via secure channels in real time the hotel booking systems and the competent institutions, which is to be also a step in the fight against the shadow economy. 

Facebook icon
Twitter icon
Google icon
e-mail icon