As an international trade organization, the International Air Transport Association, or IATA, has developed a comprehensive contract that governs the relationship between airlines and travel agents. Known as the IATA Passenger Sales Agency Agreement (PSAA), this contract outlines the terms and conditions that must be met by both parties for the successful booking, ticketing, and travel of passengers.
It is important to note that the PSAA is not a legal requirement, but it is widely accepted in the travel industry and provides a framework for the smooth operation of airline ticket sales. In fact, many airlines will only work with travel agents who are signatories to the PSAA.
The PSAA is a complex document that covers a wide range of topics, including the obligations of the airline and travel agent, ticketing procedures, commission payments, and dispute resolution processes. One of the most important aspects of the agreement is the requirement for travel agents to abide by IATA’s rules and regulations.
For example, travel agents must ensure that they are authorized to sell airline tickets and that they comply with all applicable laws and regulations. They must also provide accurate information to passengers, including details on fares, taxes, and fees. In addition, travel agents are required to maintain proper records of all transactions and provide regular reports to the airline.
In terms of ticketing procedures, the PSAA sets out specific requirements for the issuance, validation, and refunding of tickets. For example, tickets must be issued in accordance with the airline’s fare rules and conditions, and must be validated before the passenger’s departure. If a ticket is cancelled or refunded, the travel agent must follow the airline’s refund policies and procedures.
The PSAA also deals with commission payments, which are the fees that travel agents receive for selling airline tickets. The agreement sets out the commission rates, which are typically a percentage of the ticket price, and outlines the circumstances under which commission payments may be withheld or reduced.
Finally, the PSAA provides for a dispute resolution process, which is designed to resolve any disagreements that may arise between the airline and travel agent. This process involves a series of steps, including negotiation, mediation, and, if necessary, arbitration.
In summary, the IATA Passenger Sales Agency Agreement is an essential document for the travel industry, providing a framework for the successful sale and distribution of airline tickets. By setting out clear terms and conditions for both airlines and travel agents, the PSAA ensures that passengers receive accurate information, tickets are issued and validated correctly, and disputes are resolved fairly and efficiently.