At the invitation of the Tyrol Chamber of Commerce (Section for Travel Agents), on January 18, 2018, lawyer Georg Huber spoke on the new data protection legislation.
He explained the main features of the data protection law to a group of about 50 participants at the Chamber of Commerce and particulary illustrated the demands that travel agents will be facing. Special attention was given to the fact that travel agents process a large amount of client data and also have to pass these on to other service providers (hotels, airlines, rental car companies, diving schools, etc.).
These service providers are often based outside of the European Union. What’s more, some of the client data transferred is classified as sensitive data. Certain nutritional data that is important when planing and going on a trip can, for example, allow conclusions to be drawn to the state of health of the customer (glutenfree diet, diabetes, etc.). Requesting “kosher food” on the other gives an indication of the person’s religion.
Partiular care is required when the data is passed on to third parties such as hotels or airlines, to make sure that the provisions of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) are complied with. This is even more so when the service provider is outside the European Union, since then the level of data protection is generally lower than within the EU.
The subject “newsletters” or direct marketing was also discussed in detail, since it is important for travel agents to stay in direct contact with their customers and to send them information and new offers regularly. A lot of misunderstandings on this topic could be cleared up and Georg Huber explained how it will be possible to send out newsletters by e-mail in the future while still complying with data protection law.
Even though the seminar was in the evening and took nearly three hours, the participants showed a great deal of stamina! A lot of interesting questions were asked and lively discussions took place.
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