A prominent politician has suggested changes to the way travel agents deal with customer refunds.
Liberal MP and former cabinet minister Kevin Andrews said he has been inundated with horror stories of people getting travel refunds during the COVID-19 pandemic, and believes that the goodwill and integrity of travel agents is to blame.
“I’m not doubting the integrity of most travel agents – people are trying to do the right thing – but COVID has compounded an underlying problem,” he told the AAP.
Andrews is keen to debate a motion in federal parliament that agents should operate under a similar system to that of the real estate industry, whereby a customer deposit for a trip goes into a trust account.
“It’s to the benefit of both travellers and agents,” he said.
“I’m not saying it’s the travel agents’ fault, but if people can travel and then become fearful that they won’t be able to get refunds, it’s not helpful and it’s not going to do the travel industry any favours either.”
According to the AAP, Andrews wants laws introduced that entitle travellers to a refund if the product or service that they purchased hasn’t been delivered “due to situations outside of human control”.
The Liberal MP said that under the proposed trust account system, all agents would also charge a transparent fee for service.
What do you think about Andrews’ proposal? Let us know in the comments section below.