Travel Agents

AFTA urges governments to “forget the road to recovery, we need to be on the runway”

With interstate travel in Australia unlikely to return for another few weeks, one of the industry’s peak bodies has urged state and territory governments to begin adopting the National Cabinet’s new three-step plan to recovery “as quickly as possible”.

The framework, which was unveiled on Friday following a National Cabinet meeting, outlines the staggered approach states and territories can take in easing restrictions based on their COVID-19 conditions.

Step one allows local and regional travel for recreation, step two encourages the consideration of interstate recreational travel depending on the situation in each state and territory, and step three allows interstate travel.

However, there is no mention of international travel in the new framework.

Jayson Westbury, CEO of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA), has called on Australia’s state premiers and chief ministers as they implement the three steps to “forget the road to recovery, we need to be on the runway to recovery, and the travel sector is at the core of that recovery”.

“With travel of substance not potentially recognised until states and territories get to step three, we need to make sure that things get moving as quickly as possible,” he said.

Westbury said AFTA discussed the ongoing challenges of ensuring consumers are aware of the facts on cancellations and refunds with all state and territory consumer affairs ministers last week in addition to key federal ministerial offices and ministers, the ACCC and the ATO, as well as various industry associations, suppliers and international bodies.

Furthermore, the association is continuing to engage with mainstream media to spotlight agents and their efforts in supporting your customers, according to Westbury.

“Our ongoing ‘The Facts on Refunds’ campaign has again seen a reach out to all major newsrooms around Australia, as well as a number of interviews and interview offers,” he said.

“Unfortunately, some media outlets choose not to take up these interview offers. We can only speculate as to their agenda in choosing to only present one side of the story.

“Where this has happened, we have lodged formal complaints with the relevant body and will continue to do so.”


Featured image: iStock/aapsky

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

One response to “AFTA urges governments to “forget the road to recovery, we need to be on the runway””

  1. …well too bad westbury… this pandemic has shutdown the world to reboot…. when it gets back on we will all start all over again…. rushing up things will not help… remember this virus has spread uncontrollably all over the world because of over tourism… i strongly believe when they lift international travel restriction airlines should go back to the basic… yes, the full service flights and no to low cost flying for a little while… the pandemic is a reminder the world is over doing things especially with travel… let the atmosphere breath again… please…

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