AFTA welcomes the news that the Federal Government acknowledges the need for tailored support for our sector given the desperate situation travel agents are in.
Over the weekend The Daily Telegraph confirmed, what AFTA had been told earlier in the week, that a lifeline will be thrown to travel agents whose businesses have been shattered by the pandemic, with the federal government working on a relief package to support them until international borders reopen.
We look forward to continuing to work closely with the Government and relevant departments on the detail and timing and will update members when we have any additional information.
Our conversations within government have been far-reaching, inclusive and varied. The government recognises the invaluable role that the travel agents plays in the economic restart and COVIDSafe travel is an important part of this.
AFTA has been working with the department of infrastructure, IATA and Australia’s major airlines on a considered, responsible and safe approach to the resumption of travel. Central to this is the vital role that travel agents can play in COVIDSafe travel and instilling confidence in consumers that it is safe to do so.
On 18 September National Cabinet mandated that from 1 October 2020 airlines must collect four data fields for every passenger including passenger name, mobile number, email address and postcode of residence. The government recognises the significant number of bookings that occur through travel agents and as such is asking that all AFTA/ATAS members help champion the cause to mitigate COVID-19 community transmission by collecting the data also. More information will be disseminated with members this week.