09 Apr

Updated ABTA Code of Conduct

The Code of Conduct, and the Guidance on the Application of the Code, have been amended with the addition of a new clause.

New clause:

2R: ABTA Members shall, before they sell Travel Arrangements to a Client that includes a flight on an airline that is on the European Commission's list of airlines banned in the EU, inform the Client that the airline is on that list.

New explanatory guidance:

The EU maintains a list of airlines that are banned from operating in the EU due to safety concerns. It is available online at http://ec.europa.eu/transport/modes/air/safety/air-ban/index_en.htm

These airlines don’t fly within the EU, but they do fly outside it e.g. internal flights in Nepal.

Clients should be told at the time of booking if any of the airlines they’ll be flying on is on the list, so they can make an informed choice whether to proceed.

Tour operators that organise Travel Arrangements that include such airlines should provide this information to Clients. Agents should ensure that they draw their Clients’ attention to the tour operators’ information, or if they put together itineraries themselves that include banned airlines they should ensure that they check the list and tell the Client.

If the airline isn’t known at the time of booking, the Client should be given the information when the airline name is known.

Members are reminded that there are additionally current legal obligations from the EU Regulation on the Identity of the Operating Carrier:

Travel agents and tour operators must tell their Clients:

the name of the airline(s) they'll be flying on and
the fact that there is an EU blacklist they can check.

And tour operators must offer their Clients the right of reimbursement or re-routing if:

the airline is, after booking, entered onto the blacklist; or
the airline, after booking, is replaced with one that is on the blacklist.

ABTA believes that clients should be provided with this information, so that they can make an informed choice.

The Code, and the Guidance on the Application of the Code can be viewed on ABTA's website.

If you have any queries please contact the Member and Partner Information line membersinfo@abta.co.uk on 020 3117 0597.