A new consumer campaign launches today promoting the benefits of booking with an ATAS-accredited travel agent, with the multi-channel push to carry the tagline Pack some peace of mind.
The government advertising campaign aims to boost awareness of the newly de-regulated travel industry and flags ATAS accreditation as a sign of “quality, reliable advice” when booking a holiday.
“The government campaign amplifies and reinforces our messaging about the value of booking through accredited travel providers,” Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA) chief executive Jayson Westbury said.
“The majority of the Australian travel industry in terms of turnover are already ATAS accredited including Flight Centre, Helloworld, Magellan, MTA, CTM, Travel Partners, Travel Counsellors, Travellers Choice, and the Travel Corporation.
“It is also pleasing to see that a number of the individual brands are incorporating ATAS into their own advertising efforts.”
Westbury also highlighted today’s launch of the Find an ATAS travel agent web search directory to enable consumers to easily find an accredited agent.
Pack some peace of mind will run across radio, internet and print with AFTA to continue working with state and federal governments in order to promote the new scheme and grow awareness of the significant shifts underway in the industry.
“Australia is leading the way with these reforms,” Westbury said.
“In addition to providing a more flexible and equitable framework which accommodates the significant diversity of the Australian travel industry while embracing the multiple ways consumers purchase travel, these changes further elevate the professionalism of our industry which is important for agents and consumers alike.”
Check out these six tips for consumers booking with a travel agent offered on the Pack some peace of mind website:
1. Look for an agent who is accredited (for example, through the Australian Federation of Travel Agents’ ATAS scheme) or has received another stamp of approval; these companies are required to meet certain professional standards and criteria, and should have dispute resolution options in place. Search for an ATAS-accredited agent.
2. Look for an agent who advertises their services and any deals clearly.
3. Choose an agent who listens closely to what you want, answers your questions, makes appropriate suggestions, and explains any terms and conditions.
4. Get advice from family and friends about agents they have used.
5. If you book and don’t get what you paid for, you may be able to seek a chargeback from your bank, if you if you pay with a credit card, or MasterCard or Visa debit card and select ‘credit’ as the account type.
6. Make sure you carefully read the terms and conditions, so you know your options if you have to change or cancel your booking.