26 Nov

Test to release and new chargeback partner phoneline

It has been a busy week for news from the Government – including the more positive developments on a vaccine and the launch of test to release in England on 15th December. Despite these developments, a lot still needs to be done before we will begin to see a meaningful recovery for the UK travel industry. 


The introduction of a testing regime is of course a welcome step, and something that ABTA has been arguing for since the start of the pandemic, so it is good to see the Government responding to the urgent industry need. Clearly there are limits to the immediate effect it will have on the industry, particularly in relation to business travel and travel from Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, but also because the Government is still advising against all but essential travel to the majority of destinations.  


To get more people travelling it is important the Government moves to a regional approach to quarantine and travel advice and keeps the test to release scheme under review to reduce quarantine to as short a period as possible. The devolved Governments also need to work with the UK Government to develop a consistent and coordinated approach to testing.


We’ve also heard this week more about the new tiers and which areas of England they will apply to after lockdown, and we’re awaiting further guidance from the Government about what this means for international travel.


We are continuing with our lobbying activity to raise these issues and more, including the need for clarity on the availability of grant schemes to travel businesses. Yesterday I spoke to the Aviation Minister, Robert Courts, about the gravity of the situation facing all ABTA Member, and the support needed from Government. 


New partner phoneline on chargebacks

As you will see from the rest of this week’s ABTA Today, we have launched a new partner phoneline on chargebacks. ABTA Members will have access to 30 minutes of free advice from ABTA Partner Travlaw on all aspects of chargebacks including when they can be challenged and what the process is. 


Mark Tanzer, Chief Executive