According to IATA, agents and advisors booking flights for clients through the association’s Passenger Agency Program must ask travelers if they want their contact information shared with airlines in the case of operational disruptions. Agents and advisors will be required to enter the passenger contact information when booking flights beginning June 1. Carriers will be able to use the information to advise passengers of irregular flight operations and disruptions. “In the event the passenger exercises his or her right not to provide contact details it is incumbent on the Agent to indicate that the passenger has declined to provide such details, and to enter the refusal in the PNR to limit any statutory liability,” the IATA rule now reads. “In such a case, the Agent must actively advise the passenger that they may not receive information from the airline relating to flight cancellation or schedule changes (including delay in departure).”
For travelers who decline to share their phone number and/or email address, agents and advisors will have to report the client refused to provide the information. While the rule has been in place since 2013, it is now a requirement instead of a recommendation
As for how the information will be used, IATA officials said it would not be utilized for marketing or sales purposes, but instead will be for flight cancellations, schedule changes and other related operational notifications.
The IATA Passenger Agency Program provides a system for the accreditation of travel agents that meet specific industry standards and financial criteria. Currently there are some 56,261 IATA accredited travel agents operating in 207 countries and territories.
(Source: Travel Pulse)