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Orlando, Florida, October 2016—The American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI) and the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) have signed a partnership agreement to strengthen the bonds and shared interests of the two organizations in the areas of training and education.

PATA will promote the use of AHLEI courses and certification programs among its membership, particularly those in the hospitality field, students, and academic institutions. Both organizations will share selected intelligence and research and engage in joint research projects as appropriate. Together, the organizations will explore resources to help AHLEI extend its reach in the Pacific Asian travel market, and for PATA to enter the North American market.

“We are delighted to be working with the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute and believe that this partnership will provide our members the opportunity to further their skills and knowledge in this rapidly evolving industry,” said PATA CEO Dr. Mario Hardy. “Our agreement with AHLEI shows our commitment to the development of human capital development in the region especially as we focus our attention next year on the young tourism professional.”

PATA’s membership encompasses 98 government, state and city tourism bodies; 68 academic institutions; 21 international airlines, airports, and cruise lines; and hundreds of travel-related companies throughout Asia Pacific and beyond. AHLEI works with hotel brands, management companies, independent properties, associations, governmental agencies, universities, and schools around the world to provide hospitality training, educational resources, professional certification, and workforce solutions. 

Ed Kastli, AHLEI’s vice president, international sales, stated, “We look forward to enhancing PATA’s excellent Human Capital Initiative as it serves as a bridge between academic to industry platforms benefiting both students and young professionals, ensuring a better prepared next generation in the years to come who will elevate the level of service globally.”

The agreement between AHLEI and PATA came about after more than two years of discussion and is seen as a benefit for the members of both groups. 

“Having served as President and CEO of both PATA and the American Hotel & Lodging Association, AHLEI’s parent organization, it is excellent to see both organizations come together as we do share the same vision and passion for developing human capital in the travel and tourism industry,” said hospitality consultant Joseph A. McInerney. 


Photo caption: Ed Kastli, AHLEI vice president, international sales, with Halona Padiachy, director international partnerships, PATA; and Dr. Mario Hardy, PATA CEO; at the PATA headquarters in Bangkok, Thailand.

About the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (AHLEI)

Established in 1953 as the nonprofit education and training arm of the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA), AHLEI’s mission is to continue being the preferred provider to the lodging industry, hospitality schools, and related hospitality industries by developing and providing quality resources to educate, develop, and certify hospitality professionals worldwide.

Contact: Elizabeth Johnson

ejohnson@ahla.com / +1.517.318.2359

About PATA

Founded in 1951, the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA) is a not-for-profit association that is internationally acclaimed for acting as a catalyst for the responsible development of travel and tourism to, from and within the Asia Pacific region. The Association provides aligned advocacy, insightful research and innovative events to its member organisations, comprising 98 government, state and city tourism bodies, 21 international airlines, airports and cruise lines, 68 educational institutions, and hundreds of travel industry companies in Asia Pacific and beyond. Thousands of travel professionals belong to the 40 local PATA chapters worldwide. The chapters organise travel industry training and business development events. Their grassroots activism underpins PATA’s membership of the Global Travel Association Coalition (GTAC), which includes ACICLIAIATA, ICAOWEFUNWTO and the WTTC. The PATAmPOWER platform delivers unrivalled data, forecasts and insights from the PATA Strategic Intelligence Centre to members’ desktops and mobile devices anywhere in the world. PATA’s Head Office has been in Bangkok since 1998. The Association also has official offices or representation in Beijing, Sydney and London.

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