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Germany: FDSV widens membership

German agency association, FDSV, is opening up its membership to include German language travel operators who offer courses in Germany.

The German agency association is widening its membership to include inbound agencies. Photo: DAAD

FDSV also approved quality DIN EN 14804, which specifies requirements for language study tour providers

This means that agencies offering German language courses in the country will be able to join the association, which presently has 29 members, following the three new members in 2017.

German language travel tour operators, offering outbound and inbound, are [now] qualified for an FDSV membership”

“We have decided to include ‘incoming-members’ by 2018 – which means German language travel operators, offering German courses in Germany. In the past, only outbound agencies were allowed to apply for an FDSV-membership,” Julia Richter, MD of FDSV told The PIE News.

“[With] OISE, VOYAGE Jugendreisen and lernen & helfen, we are now 29 members, which is the highest number since founding the association 40 years ago.”

When asked about the plans for new membership categories in 2018, Richter made clear that the aim is to extend membership opportunities outside of the traditional areas. 

“We have already included ASTUR, CDC, Eurocentres, ESL, GLS and Sprachcaffe. OISE and others will follow. German language travel tour operators, offering outbound and inbound, are [now] qualified for an FDSV membership.”

Richter said that 2017 had been an excited year for the association, in which it also celebrated its 40th anniversary.

“HanseMerkur, a Germany-based travel insurance company, was accepted as a new sponsorship member of FDSV, joining Air Malta, The Malta Tourist Board and Spotlight Verlag.”

“We have developed our new quality seal “FDSV approved quality DIN EN 14804″, which was also recognized for Bildungsurlaub in Nordrhein Westfalen and Baden Würtemberg. That was also the most significant success last year.”

The quality seal is based on the European Standard EN 14804 and specifies requirements for language study tour providers. The document clarifies quality service levels for teaching, accommodation and travel services.

“The DIN EN 14804 is a general quality proof for European language study tour providers, schools, agents, as well as certainly clients, as they know, that the programs has been independently tested. The FDSV-guidelines are therefore identical with the European Language Norm,” she told the PIE News.

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