Where now for TA and Qantas?

Where now for TA and Qantas?
By admin


Tourism Australia remains hopeful it can patch up its differences with Qantas despite firmly backing its chairman at the centre of a row with the flag carrier.

Leaders of the tourism body also believe they have sufficient deals with other airlines for the Qantas issue not to damage its promotional and marketing efforts.

The stand off continued today with Tourism Australia yet to formally respond to Qantas’s decision to terminate long standing commercial ties with TA. Despite the lack of a statement, it is known the board and tourism minister Martin Ferguson back Dixon.

That position effectively creates a stalemate with Qantas chief executive Alan Joyce adamant his airline can no longer work with a tourism body whose chairman is actively involved in working against it.

“The chairman of Tourism Australia is part of this APA mark II club that is briefing against the company,”Joyce said.Asked if he thought Dixon should resign from TA, Joyce said it was not a matter for Qantas, but for the TA board. He added that “not one cent” will be lost to tourism with money being channelled into state tourism bodies.

With no resignation forthcoming following a TA board last night – forced or otherwise – the two parties remain at loggerheads.

Yet TA believes there is hope that the two parties can resolve their differences, although quite how remains unclear.

They also view the feud with intense frustration, coming at a time when progress is being made in galvanising the industry through its marketing efforts.

“It is a distraction from what TA is trying to achieve,” one observer said. “There is frustration.”

While losing the support of Qantas is clearly a blow, TA managing director Andrew McEvoy has articulated many times that long gone are the days of relying on only one carrier to promote Australia.

Deals have been struck with almost 20 airlines in traditional and emerging markets.

Email the Travel Weekly team at traveldesk@travelweekly.com.au

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