B-103315, B-114985, AUGUST 12, 1955, 35 COMP. GEN. 84

B-103315,B-114985: Aug 12, 1955

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Edda Emmanuelli Perez
(202) 512-2853
EmmanuelliPerezE@gao.gov

 

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

1955: REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER OF JUNE 27. WAS REACHED ON THE BASIS THAT THE USE OF THE SERVICES OF TRAVEL AGENCIES RESULTED IN NO EXTRA CHARGE TO THE GOVERNMENT AND RELIEVED THE TRAVELER OF "DIFFICULTIES PERTAINING TO CURRENCY EXCHANGE. THE AUTHORITY CONTAINED IN THAT DECISION FOR THE UTILIZATION OF TRAVEL AGENCIES WAS GRANTED PENDING FURTHER CONSIDERATION OF THE GENERAL PROBLEM INVOLVED. IT WAS INDICATED THAT THE INCLUSION OF APPROPRIATE PROVISIONS IN REVISED REGULATIONS WOULD BE DEPENDENT UPON THE FACTS AND EVENTS DEVELOPED THROUGH STUDY AND EXPERIENCE CONCERNING THE PROPRIETY AND PRACTICABILITY OF THE ISSUANCE OF TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS TO TRAVEL AGENCIES. THE RESULT OF SUCH STUDY AND EXPERIENCE IS REFLECTED IN GENERAL REGULATIONS NO. 123.

B-103315, B-114985, AUGUST 12, 1955, 35 COMP. GEN. 84

TRANSPORTATION - REQUESTS - ISSUANCE - TRAVEL AGENCIES - BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND POSSESSIONS GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS MAY NOT BE ISSUED TO TRAVEL AGENCIES FOR THE PROCUREMENT OF PASSENGER TRANSPORTATION SERVICES BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND ITS POSSESSIONS.

TO THE SECRETARY OF COMMERCE, AUGUST 12, 1955:

REFERENCE IS MADE TO A LETTER OF JUNE 27, 1955, FROM ASSISTANT SECRETARY GEORGE T. MOORE, COMMENTING ON OUR GENERAL REGULATIONS NO. 123, DATED MAY 1, 1955, 34 COMP. GEN. 782, AS TO THE USE OF TRAVEL AGENCIES FOR THE PROCUREMENT OF PASSENGER TRANSPORTATION SERVICES. YOU REQUEST THAT APPROPRIATE ACTION BE TAKEN TO PERMIT THE ISSUANCE OF TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS FOR TRANSPORTATION SERVICES BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND ITS POSSESSIONS.

PARAGRAPH 4 OF THE REGULATIONS PROVIDES FOR THE USE OF THE SERVICES OF TRAVEL AGENCIES, WHEN AUTHORIZED UNDER ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS AND WHEN THE INTERESTS OF THE UNITED STATES WOULD BE SERVED MORE ADVANTAGEOUSLY THEREBY, BUT ONLY FOR TRAVEL WITHIN FOREIGN COUNTRIES (EXCEPT CANADA AND MEXICO) OR BETWEEN FOREIGN COUNTRIES, AT CHARGES NOT EXCEEDING THOSE OTHERWISE PAYABLE TO THE CARRIERS USED. PARAGRAPH 5 OF THE REGULATIONS PROHIBITS THE USE OF THE SERVICES OF TRAVEL AGENCIES TO SECURE PASSENGER TRANSPORTATION SERVICES WITHIN THE UNITED STATES, CANADA, OR MEXICO, BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND FOREIGN COUNTRIES, BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND CANADA OR MEXICO, BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND ITS POSSESSIONS, AND BETWEEN AND WITHIN ITS POSSESSIONS.

AS NOTED IN YOUR DEPARTMENT'S LETTER, THE DECISION OF JULY 31, 1952, B- 103315, WAS REACHED ON THE BASIS THAT THE USE OF THE SERVICES OF TRAVEL AGENCIES RESULTED IN NO EXTRA CHARGE TO THE GOVERNMENT AND RELIEVED THE TRAVELER OF "DIFFICULTIES PERTAINING TO CURRENCY EXCHANGE, FOREIGN LANGUAGES, INTERNATIONAL BORDERS, TRANSFERS BETWEEN CARRIERS, ETC.' THE AUTHORITY CONTAINED IN THAT DECISION FOR THE UTILIZATION OF TRAVEL AGENCIES WAS GRANTED PENDING FURTHER CONSIDERATION OF THE GENERAL PROBLEM INVOLVED, AND IT WAS INDICATED THAT THE INCLUSION OF APPROPRIATE PROVISIONS IN REVISED REGULATIONS WOULD BE DEPENDENT UPON THE FACTS AND EVENTS DEVELOPED THROUGH STUDY AND EXPERIENCE CONCERNING THE PROPRIETY AND PRACTICABILITY OF THE ISSUANCE OF TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS TO TRAVEL AGENCIES. THE RESULT OF SUCH STUDY AND EXPERIENCE IS REFLECTED IN GENERAL REGULATIONS NO. 123.

THE ENCLOSURES SUBMITTED WITH YOUR DEPARTMENT'S LETTER, CONSISTING OF A COPY OF A MEMORANDUM DATED APRIL 8, 1955, FROM THE CIVIL AERONAUTICS ADMINISTRATION REGIONAL OFFICE AT ANCHORAGE, ALASKA, AND A COPY OF A LETTER DATED MARCH 4, 1955, FROM AN ANCHORAGE TRAVEL AGENCY, DO NOT SEEM TO DEPICT CIRCUMSTANCES SIMILAR TO THOSE DESCRIBED AS OBTAINING IN FOREIGN COUNTRIES. A RECENT ISSUE OF THE OFFICIAL AIRLINE GUIDE SHOWS THAT AT LEAST SIX AIR CARRIERS OPERATING BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND ALASKA NOW MAINTAIN TICKET OFFICES IN ALASKA. THOSE OFFICERS SHOULD BE IN POSITION TO FURNISH COMPLETE INFORMATION AS TO AVAILABLE SCHEDULES AND FARES FOR TRAVEL BETWEEN POINTS IN THE UNITED STATES AND ALASKA. NO DOUBT THESE CARRIERS ALREADY HAVE THROUGH ROUTES OR SCHEDULES WITH THE DOMESTIC AIRLINES OPERATING WITHIN THE CONTINENTAL LIMITS OF THE UNITED STATES, SO THAT WHEN THROUGH TRAVEL VIA AIR IS CONTEMPLATED, IT PRESUMABLY CAN BE PROCURED ON ONE TRANSPORTATION REQUEST DRAWN IN FAVOR OF THE INITIAL AIRLINE SERVING THE ALASKAN TERMINAL OF THE CONTEMPLATED SERVICE ROUTE. WHERE A COMBINATION OF AIR AND SURFACE TRAVEL IS DESIRED, IT SEEMS PROBABLE THAT INFORMATION WITH RESPECT TO THE SURFACE PORTION OF THE CONTEMPLATED TRIP GENERALLY WOULD BE OBTAINABLE UPON REQUEST AT THE ALASKAN TICKET OFFICES OF THE AIR CARRIERS.

WHEN THE NEW REGULATIONS WERE BEING FORMULATED CARRIER REPRESENTATIVES OBJECTED TO ANY PROVISION FOR THE ISSUANCE OF GOVERNMENT TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS TO TRAVEL AGENCIES, PARTICULARLY AT POINTS WHERE THE CARRIERS MAINTAIN THEIR OWN TICKET OFFICES, INDICATING AMONG OTHER REASONS, THAT THEY ARE PREPARED TO FURNISH ALL INFORMATION AND SERVICES THAT THE ORDINARY TRAVELER COULD BE EXPECTED TO REQUIRE.

UNDER THE CIRCUMSTANCES, THE FACTS PRESENTED HERE DO NOT WARRANT ACTION BY US TO PERMIT THE ISSUANCE OF TRANSPORTATION REQUESTS TO TRAVEL AGENCIES FOR TRANSPORTATION SERVICES BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND ITS POSSESSIONS.