Statement on Coronavirus from Terry Dale, President & CEO,
United States Tour Operators Association
NEW YORK (January 31, 2020) – In the wake of the news on the coronavirus outbreak and travel advisory from the U.S. Department of State, USTOA conducted a survey of its Tour Operator Members with programs to China to determine the reaction of guests and travel advisors, and what steps our members are taking. The members responding to the survey report that they are in contact with guests and travel advisors (as applicable) to discuss concerns and options for travel booked; some report few or no calls as yet because of seasonality or timing of travel programs to later in 2020.
Every tour operator member is prioritizing the health and wellbeing of its guests. Our members are handling the issue based on the company’s procedures and policies that might include refunds, postponements or offering alternative travel options.
USTOA advises that consumers and travel advisors contact the tour operator directly and in a timely fashion to discuss available options. USTOA and its members will continue to monitor the news and statements from various organizations, such as WHO, CDC and the U.S. Department of State.
Representing nearly $19 billion in revenue, the member companies of U.S. Tour Operators Association provide tours, packages and custom arrangements that allow 9.8 million travelers annually unparalleled access, insider knowledge, peace-of-mind, value and freedom to enjoy destinations and experiences across the entire globe. Each member company has met the travel industry’s highest standards, including participation in the USTOA’s Travelers Assistance Program, which protects consumer payments up to $1 million if the company goes out of business. As a voice for the tour operator industry for more than 40 years, USTOA also provides education and assistance for consumers and travel agents.
Gina Dolecki/Ashley Mindnich
A travel vacation should not only be an unforgettable experience, but offer solid peace of mind. That’s why USTOA created a consumer protection fund which protects consumers who book with our Active Members.Learn More