You should all have recently received a copy of “Your Year at ABTA” which provides a snapshot of the activity that ABTA has conducted on behalf of our Members over the last twelve months. Following the vote for Brexit in summer 2016, we have done a great deal of work with Members to identify the priorities for the travel industry and in making sure our voice is heard in Westminster and Brussels through meetings, reports and media work. One of the priority areas for our lobbying and communications work in recent months has been highlighting the need for changes in the law to help crack down on the growing problem of fraudulent holiday sickness claims. We have gained significant, supportive coverage in the media and are working closely with a number of journalists to continue to raise public awareness of the realities behind this problem. In 2016, we used the high profile failure of Low Cost holidays to emphasise the benefits of booking with an ABTA Member; this resulted in more than 250,000 people viewing our “Why Book with an ABTA Member” video and significant increases in traffic to abta.com. Our annual consumer survey indicates that the value of the ABTA logo has increased over the last twelve months, with more people saying that they recognise and value the logo when booking. This was given a further boost by our Travel with confidence national advertising campaign in January. The campaign illustrated the growing problem of travel related fraud and the protection offered by booking with an ABTA Member. We have also significantly increased the range and scope of our conferences and events programme following feedback from Members. I would encourage you to read the “Your Year at ABTA” for a fuller update on the past year and as always, we appreciate your feedback.
Mark Tanzer, Chief Executive