With the debut of ChatGPT late last year, the use of artificial intelligence (“AI”) quickly captured the interest of consumers and businesses, and the travel industry is no exception. But ever since, policymakers in Washington, DC have been grappling with how AI tools should be regulated. Given the concerns about inaccurate or outdated information and recommendations, copyright issues, ethical risks and more, the use of AI in travel may soon be a focal point in such discussions.

Join Travel Tech CEO Laura Chadwick on Thursday, November 16th, 2023, at the Phocuswright Conference for a “soapbox” industry debate on “Responsible AI: Is Regulation the Answer and How Far Should it Go?”. We encourage all travel innovators to get on your “soapbox” and join us for a debate on what, if anything, the government should do to ensure the responsible use of AI in the travel sector. No matter where you are on your AI journey, this session will provide key insights and considerations amid the expanding usage of this technology in your business.

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Spreading Awareness of the Airline Passengers with Disabilities Bill of Rights

In celebration of the 37th anniversary of the Air Carrier Access Act, the Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) and several of its member companies joined the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) #AccessibleAirTravel Campaign to raise awareness about the rights of people with disabilities to safe, dignified, and accessible air travel.

Alongside Travel Tech, member companies Amadeus, Sabre, Travelport, BCD Travel, and CWT are partnering with DOT and joining the campaign. They are among other entities, including airlines, airports, and disability organizations, that are raising public awareness.

“We are proud to partner with the Department of Transportation to build awareness about the rights passengers with disabilities have when flying,” said Laura Chadwick, President and CEO of Travel Tech. 

The campaign brings awareness to the Department of Transportation’s Airline Passengers with Disabilities Bill of Rights, which describes the fundamental rights of air travelers with disabilities. The Department provided a summary video to empower individuals with disabilities to understand and assert their right to accessible air travel.


The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) empowers traveler choice by advocating for public policy that promotes marketplace transparency and competition. Travel Tech represents the leading innovators in travel technology, including online travel agencies, metasearch engines, short-term rental platforms, global distribution systems, and travel management companies.


To schedule an interview with a Travel Tech spokesperson, contact Bradford Williamson of Glen Echo Group at 202.870.3234 or bwilliamson@glenechogroup.com.

On Friday, September 29th, the Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) submitted comments in response to the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on a Trade Regulation Rule on the Use of Consumer Reviews and Testimonials.

In its comments, Travel Tech details its members’ significant investments in robust trust and safety operations to protect the reliability of the reviews appearing on their platforms. Travel Tech expresses its support for the Commission’s efforts in the proposed rule to target those intent on committing fraud through fake or deceptive reviews.

“FTC has achieved the right balance in its proposed rule to target bad actors while preserving industry flexibility to develop innovative and effective solutions that will help to maintain consumer confidence in reviews,” said Laura Chadwick, President and CEO. “Travel Tech members invest significant resources in robust trust and safety operations to protect the reliability of the reviews appearing on their platforms.”

Examples of Travel Tech members’ commitments to protecting travelers from fraudulent reviews include:


The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) empowers traveler choice by advocating for public policy that promotes marketplace transparency and competition. Travel Tech represents the leading innovators in travel technology, including online travel agencies, metasearch engines, short-term rental platforms, global distribution systems, and travel management companies.

To schedule an interview with a Travel Tech spokesperson, contact Bradford Williamson of Glen Echo Group at 202.870.3234 or bwilliamson@glenechogroup.com.

U.S. House of Representative Committee considers the No Hidden Fees on Extra Expenses for Stays (FEES) Act

On September 27, 2023, the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Innovation, Data, and Commerce convened a hearing on “Proposals to Enhance Product Safety and Transparency for Americans” where H.R.___, the No Hidden Fees on Extra Expenses for Stays (FEES) was considered. In written testimony, Laura Chadwick, President and CEO of Travel Tech, expressed the organization’s general support for the bill. 

“The No Hidden FEES Act is an excellent first step toward setting a national standard for resort fee transparency,” said Laura Chadwick, President and CEO of Travel Tech. “The Travel Technology Association believes travelers should be able to make informed decisions without hidden surprises or unexpected expenses. We will continue to work with Congressional leaders and travel stakeholders to improve the bill.”

Travel Tech worked closely with House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Innovation, Data, and Commerce leadership on the development of the legislation to ensure uniformity and certainty for hotels, short-term rentals, online ticket agents, metasearch agents, and most of all, travelers, on what mandatory fees are included in advertised pricing for lodging.

Travel Tech supports a single, national price transparency standard. Without one, a “patchwork” of state regulations, with different regulations and potential penalties, would likely emerge. This would place a significant compliance burden on the travel technology industry. 

California is likely to be the first state to adopt price transparency laws since President Biden announced his efforts to end “junk fees” in his 2023 State of the Union Address. Governor Newsom has until October 14th, 2023 to sign CA Senate Bill 478 and CA Assembly Bill 537 into law. In July 2023, Travel Tech sent a letter of opposition to the California State Assembly urging legislators to hold off on taking state action to allow the federal legislative and rulemaking processes to create a uniform standard for consumer protection and lodging price display.

Read the full comments.


The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) empowers traveler choice by advocating for public policy that promotes marketplace transparency and competition. Travel Tech represents the leading innovators in travel technology, including online travel agencies, metasearch engines, short-term rental platforms, global distribution systems, and travel management companies.

To schedule an interview with a Travel Tech spokesperson, contact Bradford Williamson of Glen Echo Group at 202.870.3234 or bwilliamson@glenechogroup.com.

California Governor Newsom Set to Sign Bills Into Law, U.S. Congress to Consider Resort Fees Bill Soon

Following two votes by its state assembly the week of September 11th, California is a step closer to being the first state to adopt price transparency laws – SB 478 and AB 537– since President Biden announced his efforts to end “junk fees” in his 2023 State of the Union Address. Governor Newsom has until October 14th, 2023 to sign the legislation. Travel Tech supports a single, national price transparency standard to create uniformity and certainty for consumers, lodging operators and travel technology companies.

To assist travel technology industry members in understanding this new legislation, Travel Tech has prepared an informational memo regarding SB 478 and AB 537; current and future federal legislative and regulatory efforts regarding price transparency; and Travel Tech’s advocacy efforts on this issue.  

The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) empowers traveler choice by advocating for public policy that promotes marketplace transparency and competition. Travel Tech represents the leading innovators in travel technology, including online travel agencies, metasearch engines, short-term rental platforms, global distribution systems, and travel management companies.

Read Travel Tech’s Free Legislative Analysis

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To schedule an interview with a Travel Tech spokesperson, contact Bradford Williamson of Glen Echo Group at 202.870.3234 or bwilliamson@glenechogroup.com.

On Wednesday, September 20th, the Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) submitted supplemental comments in response to supplemental comments by Airlines for America (A4A) regarding the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) proposed “Enhancing Transparency of Airline Ancillary Service Fees” rulemaking. In these comments, Travel Tech refutes A4A’s assertion that the DOT rulemaking is unnecessary.

“Travel Tech supports the Department’s rulemaking as it has rightly determined that a problem exists for consumers,” said Laura Chadwick, President and CEO, in the comments. “While fees for ancillary services aren’t mandatory, many passengers need to purchase these services. As such, consumers ought to have the ability to know and compare the true cost of their air travel before they purchase it, which includes these critical ancillary fees.”

Furthermore, in response to A4A’s claim that “a healthy market exists today,” Chadwick responds,

“Travel Tech agrees with A4A that contracts between Global Distribution Systems and airlines that include ancillaries are a positive development, but progress has been slow and incomplete and has been happening in the shadow of DOT’s repeated efforts to address the lack of pricing transparency caused by airline unbundling. Travel Tech respectfully urges that now is the time for the Department to act and to effectively address this issue.”

Travel Tech continues to advocate in support of the DOT’s proposed rule, as modified to ensure that all intermediaries who provide fare and schedule data to online ticket and travel agents receive ancillary information from airlines. Doing so will ensure consumers have transparency into the full cost of an airline ticket and won’t be surprised by hidden critical ancillary fees.


The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) empowers traveler choice by advocating for public policy that promotes marketplace transparency and competition. Travel Tech represents the leading innovators in travel technology, including online travel agencies, metasearch engines, short-term rental platforms, global distribution systems, and travel management companies.

To schedule an interview with a Travel Tech spokesperson, contact Bradford Williamson of Glen Echo Group at 202.870.3234 or bwilliamson@glenechogroup.com.

Urges Government of Canada to Modify Actions per Travel Technology Industry Concerns

The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) submitted comments in response to the Canadian Government’s proposed Digital Services Tax Act (“DSTA”), which would impose a new, unilateral, and retroactive tax on travel technology industry members, negatively impacting their operations and ability to empower traveler choice and marketplace competition.

“In its current state, the proposed DSTA threatens the still-active recovery of the global travel tech marketplace with ambiguous and confusing language,” wrote Laura Chadwick, President and CEO of Travel Tech. “We are eager to work with the Government of Canada to ensure the companies who are required to comply can comply.”

Travel Tech’s comments detail how the proposed DSTA should be modified:

First, the Government of Canada should increase the DSTA threshold to align with OECD Pillar One, Amount A (i.e., EUR 20BN revenue and 10% Profit Before Tax margin). In an industry based on price comparisons, this will ensure companies can maintain their critical price competitiveness.

Second, the Government of Canada should allow a credit for DST, or any similar tax, paid in another jurisdiction to avoid double taxation. As written, the language regarding revenue sourcing rules is ambiguous and confusing, therefore, this addition will ensure clarity about taxation categories.

Finally, the Government of Canada should remove the two-year retroactivity of the DST and apply it only to revenues occurred on or after the date of enactment. A tax of this magnitude should not be backward-looking, especially after years of good-faith negotiation.

Canada is pursuing a 3 percent tax on the revenues of large technology companies as OECD-member nations continue to negotiate a global approach to digital services taxes.


The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) empowers traveler choice by advocating for public policy that promotes marketplace transparency and competition. Travel Tech represents the leading innovators in travel technology, including online travel agencies, metasearch engines, short-term rental platforms, global distribution systems, and travel management companies.

To schedule an interview with a Travel Tech spokesperson, contact Bradford Williamson of Glen Echo Group at 202.870.3234 or bwilliamson@glenechogroup.com.

Ahead of the return of Congress to Washington, D.C. next week, Travel Tech has met with U.S. Senate offices to discuss the airline refund obligations of ticket agents. Late last year, the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), in its proposed Airline Ticket Refunds and Consumer Protections rulemaking, sought to require ticket agents to refund customers within seven days, even if the airline had not yet returned the funds.

Travel Tech successfully advocated for bill language included in the U.S. House of Representatives-passed FAA Reauthorization that would require a refund only when such ticket agent possesses, or has access to, the funds of a passenger.

“Simply put: our members can only refund what they have in their possession. The DOT’s proposed rule on the timing of refunds places ticket agents in a precarious financial position, no matter their size, having to make refunds without first receiving the customers’ funds back from airlines,” said Laura Chadwick, president & CEO of Travel Tech. 

“We were pleased the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee heard us and included this sensible provision in their bill,” Chadwick continued. “We are continuing our efforts to secure a similar provision in the U.S. Senate’s FAA Reauthorization.”

As it stands today, the authorization for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will expire on September 30, 2023. The Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee has not yet considered or cleared its FAA Reauthorization legislation due to an ongoing impasse over pilot training requirements.

Advocating for Federal Legislation Creating Uniform National Privacy Standards

[Arlington, VA] [August 15, 2023] — The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech), the voice of the travel technology industry and consistent advocate for public policy that supports a competitive and transparent marketplace, announced it has joined the United for Privacy: End the Patchwork coalition. The purpose of the coalition is to advocate for comprehensive federal privacy legislation that creates a uniform national standard, preempts state law, and ends the privacy patchwork of various state regulations.

“Travel Tech’s members are committed to protecting the personal information of their customers.  Trust and transparency are critical in the online travel marketplace, and our members strive every day to meet and surpass consumers’ expectations regarding the use of their personal information,” stated Laura Chadwick, president and CEO of Travel Tech. “However, without clarity and consistency of policy or regulation, innovation is disrupted and marketplace confusion results.”

“We look forward to working with the United for Privacy coalition to advocate for Congress to pass a national framework, consistent across all states and jurisdictions, that effectively preempts state consumer privacy and data security laws,” Chadwick continued. “A comprehensive national data privacy framework will allow businesses and consumers to transact more safely, effectively, fairly, and efficiently.”

Travel Tech joins several leading trade associations in support of the United for Privacy coalition, including the Business Roundtable, US Chamber of Commerce, Consumer Technology Association, NetChoice, and others.

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The Travel Technology Association (Travel Tech) empowers traveler choice by advocating for public policy that promotes marketplace transparency and competition. Travel Tech represents the leading innovators in travel technology, including online travel agencies, metasearch engines, short-term rental platforms, global distribution systems, and travel management companies.

To schedule an interview with a Travel Tech spokesperson, contact Dan Rene of kglobal at 202-329-8357 or daniel.rene@kglobal.com.

With the recent debut of Apple’s Vision Pro, its new long-awaited augmented and virtual reality headset, interest in the use of immersive technologies – collectively known as “XR” — to support travelers and travel companies alike continues to grow. This cutting-edge technology has the potential to:

In this special Travel Tech webinar, learn more from Cortney Harding, a leading authority on emerging technologies and CEO of the award-winning Friends with Holograms XR creative agency. Harding introduces augmented and virtual reality, how she’s seen the technology grow and develop over the past few years and discusses the potential for XR in the travel industry.

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Watch Travel Tech’s Exclusive Webinar on the Impact of Immersive Technology on Travel

Travel Tech Releases New Economic Analysis on Costs of Phasing Out Legal Short-Term Rentals on Maui

June 13, 2024

Study shows short-term rentals generated $2.2 billion in economic activity for Maui and $11.3 billion across Hawaii in 2023 KAHULUI – Today, the Travel Technology Association and Hawaii economic consultant Kloninger & Sims released a study on the economic and fiscal impacts of the short-term rental market in Maui County and across the state. According […]