Travel Agents

AFTA’s electorate visits deliver with MP raising plight of agents in Parliament

The Australian Federation of Travel Agents’ electorate program continues to deliver, with Member for Wentworth David Sharma raising the plight of travel agents in federal Parliament.

Sharma (pictured above) singled out agents in the House of Representatives on Monday, saying he had recently visited a number of travel agencies in his own electorate in Sydney to find out firsthand how they are dealing with the unprecedented challenges they are facing right now.

“Some have never been as busy, but it is in processing refunds. When they have processed the refunds, they have also had to return the commissions they earned from these sales,” he told Parliament.

“These businesses have benefited from JobKeeper, but in many respects, it has never been tougher for them. They have many of the same costs, but their cash flow is often negative because they have no new bookings coming through the door.

“International travel has taken a big hit. There are no cruises or even domestic travel, flights or packages to places like Queensland, Broome and Uluru. I want today to acknowledge the tough times they face and the stress they’re under.

“But they are all doing the right thing, serving their customers, keeping their doors open, keeping their employees on and, for many, keeping a smile on their faces. I know this is a story being replicated across the country.

“I want to encourage people, if you’re looking to book travel soon, to please use your local travel agents.”

AFTA chief executive Darren Rudd has now coordinated nine visits to local members of Parliament and provided the opportunity for 26 travel agents to share their stories directly with political influencers.

The electorate campaign builds on AFTA’s direct lobbying at a federal level, multiple submissions and recent appearance before the Senate Select Committee into COVID-19.

“AFTA is attacking this problem at multiple levels to make sure our political decision-makers understand how devastatingly hard hit travel agents have been by COVID, border closures and travel restrictions, and why tailored, ongoing financial support and business relief measures are essential,” Rudd said.

“The impact of hearing directly from agents from within their local community really hits home, as David Sharma’s comments to Parliament show.

“He, and in fact all the parliamentarians briefed so far, now understand the multiple challenges travel agents face, the value of travel agents and the important work travel agents have been providing in supporting consumers.

“One of the many benefits of the electorate visits, in addition to raising understanding of travel agents’ challenges, is that they ensure our community has a voice in our national Parliament and amongst our political class at all levels.

“AFTA and our members will continue to raise awareness and push for support at a federal, state and territory level as we work together to get through this.”

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Leave a Reply

Cruise

Princess Cruises pushes back its pause on Aussie and Kiwi sailings

Meanwhile, Travel Weekly has had its pause on office drinks extended after a particularly bad incident involving a pot plant and copious amounts of slivovitz.

Share

CommentComments

Road & Rail

TUNE IN: New TV show to highlight Australia’s ‘Roads Less Travelled’

Get the popcorn ready and watch the client inquiries roll in because Network 10 is debuting a new show that places domestic travel front and centre.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

“Offensive, grossly inappropriate” vaginal examinations of female plane passengers reported to Australian Federal Police

The federal government is demanding answers from the relevant authorities, after 13 Australian women were forced to undergo invasive medical examinations at an international airport.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

NSW New England region gets its first five-star hotel

Bespoke leather bedheads, marble bedside tables and bathrooms, 4K smart TVs, Tesla charging stations… it’s fair to say this property has been pimped out.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Victoria celebrates second ‘donut day’, as tourism industry reacts to easing of restrictions

by Christian Fleetwood

Travel Weekly staff are enjoying a few Krispy Kremes in celebration of Victoria’s consecutive ‘donut days’, so much so that we’ve all had to undo the top button of our pants.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Aussie carrier launches direct flights between Canberra and Newcastle

Do you have a client who follows both the Raiders and the Knights in the NRL? Well, these new flights might tickle their rugby league fancy.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

CLIA to showcase world’s great cruise ports and destinations

Has the current lull in cruising led you to forget some of the popular ports and destinations around the globe? Get reacquainted with them with this.

Share

CommentComments

Events

Have you seen the Travel DAZE 2020 agenda?

With Travel DAZE 2020 kicking off on Monday, start blocking out time in your diary so you can tune in to all of our fabulous speakers!

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Cathay Pacific axes 8,500 jobs and ditches regional airline as part of major restructure

Some big changes have been announced for Hong Kong’s flag carrier, as it struggles to fly through the turbulence caused by COVID-19.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Why now is the perfect time to become a mobile travel agent

by Sponsored by MTA - Mobile Travel Agents

COVID-19 has been devastating for even the most experienced agents. But with the right support, resources and business model, you can take the edge off the pain and be ready for travel to return.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

New research reveals Australia is losing $319m a day from lack of air travel

Want to know how much Australia’s economy is suffering just from a lack of domestic and international flying? Here’s the answer.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

PATA announces new chair and executive board

The Pacific Asia Travel Association has revealed its new-look board in a very Brady Bunch-esque way.

Share

CommentComments