AITO: The Association of Independent Tour Operators

AITO Background

When AITO was established it was in response to the problems posed for smaller travel companies by a sharp increase in bonding levels following a couple of high profile collapses. It was soon realised, however, that smaller, specialist businesses have more in common than a concern with regulatory issues. Thus the Association has evolved - as the industry has become ever more polarised between large and small companies, with fewer and fewer occupying the middle ground - into a unique trade body with a number of objectives.

AITO is run by a Council of (unpaid) members who elect one of their number to the position of Chairman. The Council which meets regularly throughout the year, is supported by a team of permanent staff based in Twickenham, managed by a full-time Executive Director.

AITO's great strength comes from the diversity of its membership and the expertise of its repective owners. Together, AITO companies find strength in numbers to purchase services of various kinds, to make their collective voice heard on a range of issues, to promote the association's values and to market the remarkable variety of members' holidays.

AITO Council

Derek Moore (Chairman)
John Tangney (Deputy Chairman) - Tangney Tours
James Westrip - Africa Collection
Stephen Brook - CICERONI
Chris Rowles - Discover Adventure
Mark Leaney (Co-opted) - Discover the World
Charlie Hopkinson - Dragoman
Sam Clark - Experience Travel
Chris McIntyre - Expert Africa
Alisdair Luxmoore - Fleewinter
John Thirtle - Geodyssey
Sarah Bradley - Journey Latin America
Jono Vernon-Powell - Nomadic Thoughts
Kathy Cook - RWH Travel
Noel Josephides - Sunvil Holidays
John Tangney - Tangney Tours
Oli Dobbs - The Travel Gallery
Matt Gannan - Tucan Travel
Martyn Sumners (Executive Director) - AITO HQ