03 Jun

ABTA urges Members to invite their MPs to their stores and businesses to help them understand the challenges they face

With a parliamentary debate on travel planned for 10 June, ABTA has updated useful tools that travel agents and tour operators can use in their contact with their local MP, making the process easier and more effective. 

ABTA is also suggesting that Members invite their MP to come into their shop to set out the severe problems of last 15 months and the vital role that they play in their community helping to maintain the health of hard-pressed high streets. 

The new tools include a template email for MPs, a briefing note and a concise infographic on the economic realities affecting travel agents during the pandemic. The tools can be found at www.abta.com/savefuturetravel.

Ahead of Mark Tanzer’s appearance at the Treasury Select Committee next week, ABTA has launched a short poll to collate additional evidence from Members regarding their access to support schemes and current challenges. The evidence gathered will build on recent engagement with Members that has provided valuable feedback on many issues around the ongoing challenges facing the sector and access to different support schemes. The link to the ABTA Member Poll is here, which should take no more than five minutes to complete. 

Luke Petherbridge, Director of Public Affairs at ABTA – The Travel Association said:

“It’s really important that we encourage as many MPs as possible to attend the debate in June and speak up for the industry. 

“There is strong support for the sector among many parliamentarians, but we need to keep up the pressure on Government to act to save the travel industry. MPs will play a really important role in helping to make our case about the value of the sector to Government and the need to provide tailored assistance.

“Inviting your local MP to come into your shop can also be a powerful and extremely effective way of demonstrating the vital role you play in your community and that travel needs the same kind of support that the government has been happy to give to other industries.

“We will be doing all we can to make sure as many MPs as possible are aware of the issues facing sector and our main asks for Government support – extending employment support and business rates relief and making available recovery grants for travel businesses. 

“We will also make clear the need for Ministers to focus on aiding the recovery of international travel ahead of the upcoming reviews into the traffic-light system, opening up more countries to the green-list where health data allows. They should also give serious consideration to relaxing restrictions for travel between low-risk countries and for fully vaccinated individuals. As the summer progresses this will increasingly be the case in many of our most popular overseas destinations and would represent another clear, significant benefit of the successful vaccine roll out in the UK enabling many more to take a much needed and affordable break.”

Notes to editors
ABTA has been a trusted travel brand for over 70 years. Our purpose is to help our Members to grow their businesses successfully and sustainably, and to help their customers travel with confidence. 

The ABTA brand stands for support, protection and expertise. This means consumers have confidence in ABTA and a strong trust in ABTA Members. These qualities are core to us as they ensure that holidaymakers remain confident in the holiday products that they buy from our Members. 
We help our Members and their customers navigate through today's changing travel landscape by raising standards in the industry; offering schemes of financial protection; providing an independent complaints resolution service should something go wrong; giving guidance on issues from sustainability to health and safety and by presenting a united voice to government to ensure the industry and the public get a fair deal.
ABTA has more than 4,300 travel brands in Membership, providing a wide range of leisure and business travel services, with a combined annual UK turnover of £39 billion. For more details about what we do, what being an ABTA Member means and how we help the British public travel with confidence visit www.abta.com.