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Friday, October 12, 2012

Time For Travel Industry To Band Together

Roy Merricks

Mobile Travel Agents' Managing Director, Roy Merricks has called on the travel industry to band together in order to ensure its value proposition is well recognised within the community at large.

His comments follow the release last week of the Council of Consumer Affairs Officials of Australia and New Zealand Travel Industry Transition Plan Consultation Draft.

Mr Merricks has pointed to a suggestion contained in the National Travel Industry Transition Plan (NTITP) that the future could see more and more consumers eschewing dealings with travel agents in favour of dealing directly with travel service suppliers.

The key assumption contained within the NTITP, he said, was that consumers were still likely to engage agents in the future for specific reasons but would be more likely to exercise conscious decision-making in actual agent selection.

Mr Merricks also pointed towards a proposal contained within the draft which he said suggests partial use of TCF surplus funds be used to 'educate consumers as to the risks associated with purchasing from a travel agent, or prepaying generally.'

It should also be remembered, he said, that the bulk of the surplus TCF funds have largely been collected from travel agents.

"There needs to be a balanced view and one that includes and underlines the benefits of dealing with a travel agent," he said.

"With the proposed timeline of agents ceasing to be TCF members in 2014 and the StateTravel Agents Act to be repealed in 2015, there is clearly a lot of work to be done in the lead up to the changes.

"As industry participants we know we are relevant but that's not as important as ensuring the travelling public that we are.

"I know this point isn't one lost on Jayson Westbury and AFTA.

"We need to band together and work with them in numbers to ensure our value proposition is well known in the community.

"And the time for that is now!"


Licensed since 1999, MTA is a 100 per cent Australian owned family business with clients nationally and headquartered on Queensland's Gold Coast.

MTA Travel Experts are hand picked travel professionals who generally have extensive industry experience of between 15 and 25 years experience working in major agency chains prior to joining the organisation.

IATA accredited and a member of the Travel Compensation Fund, MTA is also proud to be a member of Virtuoso, the exclusive 'by-invitation-only' global organisation comprising the top one per cent of travel agencies worldwide. MTA is also a Travelscene American Express corporate member and an accredited Virgin Galactic Space Agency.

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