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About WYSE Travel Confederation

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Who we are

We are the only global not-for-profit membership organisation representing the entire youth, student and educational travel industry. Our members are the leaders in youth travel.

What we believe in

We believe in the economic and social power of youth, student and educational travel. Today, our work is more important than ever.

What we do

We promote the youth travel industry and provide business development tools for our members. Read our Four Pillars for more information on our work.

Our members include

Adventure travel | Airlines | Activities & Attractions | Au Pair | Buyers | Consultants | Cultural Exchange | Digital Marketing | DMCs | Hostels | Hotels | Insurance providers | Investors | Language Schools | National Associations | NTOs | OTAs | PMS Systems | Service Providers | Student Accommodation | Summer Camps | Technology | Tour operators | Transportation | Travel agents | Universities | Volunteer organisations | Wholesalers | Work experience

Our global community is the world’s most powerful and extensive network of youth and student travel professionals, consisting of more than 600 members from 70 countries. Members of WYSE Travel Confederation collectively serve over 40 million young travellers a year and are the leaders in the unique types of travel products and services that young people utilise. Click here for a list of our members.

Our mission

To contribute to the personal and professional growth of students and young people and positively impact our global community by fostering international understanding, responsible international travel, cultural exchange and education.”

Our four pillars

WYSE Travel Confederation’s annual Programme of Work revolves around its four pillars of providing members and the industry at large with valuable industry research, new trading opportunities, educational tools and to advocate on behalf of the industry and our members.

WYSE provides commercial opportunities for buyers and sellers of international youth travel products and services through its portfolio of events. Join our events if you wish to meet new business partners, network with industry leaders and share knowledge.

WYSE Travel Confederation provides up-to-date market and industry intelligence, analysis and statistics to help the industry make informed decisions. Our research programme constitutes the backbone of our mission and its breadth is unrivalled in the sector.

We believe in the importance of professional and continuing education for you. With over 120 speakers per year across our seminars, workshops and webinars, the WYSE educational programme provides professional development opportunities.

WYSE advocates on behalf of its members and the industry as a whole on issues such as visas, market development and tourism policy. Addressing these issues, WYSE provides industry leadership through ‘one voice’ advocacy and representation.

Our History

WYSE Travel Confederation has a history going back to 1949 and was founded through the merger of the Federation of International Youth Travel Organisations (FIYTO) and the International Student Travel Confederation (ISTC) in order to create a stronger united body to represent the global youth travel industry. WYSE Travel Confederation is built on decades of experience and recognised as a long-standing and trusted global community.

ISTC and FIYTO were formed amidst post-war efforts to foster peace and cultural understanding through social tourism. The philosophy was that student travel, and the exchange of ideas it encourages, contributes positively to education and plays an important role in developing greater international understanding. FIYTO and ISTC advocated the special identity of student travellers and the need for affordable and specialised student travel services that enabled international youth mobility. The birth of youth travel and the vibrant industry that it has become today was spawned by these organisations and their mission to promote cultural understanding and world peace by inspiring young people to travel.

These aims remain just as vital and relevant today as young people equip themselves with the practical skills and knowledge necessary to succeed in today’s global political economy. Study, work experience and travel are all components of the educational and personal development of young people. A growing number of young people also want to help people and make practical contributions to the places that they visit.

Our founding sector associations

Our Partners

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Emirates, a WYSE Travel Confederation Elite member, is one of the largest airlines in the world. Their modern fleets of Airbus A380s and Boeing 777s offer customers the comforts of the latest and most efficient wide-body aircraft in the skies.

Emirates is committed to inspiring youth travellers around the world with their growing network of worldwide destinations, industry-leading inflight entertainment, regionally inspired cuisine, and world-class service.

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As one of the more than 600 member organisations that comprise WYSE Travel Confederation, Travelcuts has roots in the youth travel industry that span over five decades, catering to the international travel planning and booking needs of young explorers.

David Chapman, Director General of WYSE Travel Confederation, explains: “The overall impact of the agreement is a real positive for the industry. It allows us to travel more extensively to help to open up new destinations for young travellers, and by extension to help generate more revenue opportunities for our members. In addition, having a globally recognised name like Travelcuts or Merit Travel Group featured alongside our own, only adds to our status as the world’s most powerful and extensive network of youth and student travel professionals.”