The Universal Federation of Travel Agents Association (UFTAA) is a federation of national associations of travel agents and tour operators and is the largest world body representing the travel industry. The Universal Federation of Travel Agents Association represents 114 National Associations and additional Affiliate members in a total of 121 countries. UFTAA has consultative status with the UN/NGO/ECOSOC, and works closely with other world bodies such as UNESCO, WHO for a sustainable development and responsible tourism.
UFTAA seeks to encourage travel among people of all nations and to support the freedom of travel throughout the world. To this end, UFTAA is an effective lobbying body and opposes legislation directly harmful to travel and free movement. UFTAA seeks to reduce or abolish bureaucratic obstacles to travel. Recognising the need to unify travel agencies and tour-operators into one international federation carrying the voice and defending the rights of travel industry professionals, UFTAA was founded in 1966 as a result of a merger of two large world organisations, FIAV and UOTAA.
UFTAA is dedicated to Education and Training and maintains the UFTAA Educational Academy. UFTAA has an active partnership with the IATA/UFTAA Training Programme and includes a four level educational programme. The new courses also include Marketing and Management education.
The IATA-UFTAA Training Programme is available through a number of means including Distant learning, Classroom teaching at 220 authorized training centres around the world as well as made to measure courses at the student�s locale. To date over 200,000 students have participated in the IATA-UFTAA Training Programme.
To provide Liability Insurance to its members agencies and operators, UFTAA is working closely with major insurance companies to protect travel agents from any actions brought against them for accidents to third parties that may occur on the travel agents property or for injury during their travel or in their accommodation during performance of their professional activities.
During 1990, in co-operation with IATA and National Associations, UFTAA initiated the Professional Travel Agents Card Programme, which is available to the staff of Travel Agencies, Tour Operators, and in some countries, Allied Members. The card is accepted world-wide as identity for discounted travel, accommodation, and travel services for Travel Agents.