Every Seat Safe – that’s the demand being made by Travel Weekly as part of a new campaign ahead of a government consultation on Atol reform.
The proposed flight-plus change to the consumer protection scheme is only a sticking-plaster solution.
We are calling on Travel Weekly readers to back our demand that the government makes a firm commitment to bring all airlines under Atol once the flight-plus reforms have gone through.
Although a debate on Atol at last week’s Barclays Travel Forum revealed faultlines within the industry, there was clear unity on this issue.
John McEwan, Abta chairman and Advantage Travel Centres chief executive, said: “I would not support flight-plus if there was not a commitment from the government to bring the airlines in.”
Kane Pirie, managing director of Travel Republic, said the forthcoming flight-plus consultation was a rare opportunity for the industry to get its voice heard.
“Abta has been lobbying for an all-flights levy for decades. For the first time there is a chink of light where the government seems willing to listen.”
Ian Ailles, mainstream chief executive at Thomas Cook, said: “We have got to try to make progress. We want a level playing field.”
And Richard Jackson, consumer protection director at the CAA, said: “There is a great opportunity to redesign the scheme. The government, without any pressure, has taken the situation forward voluntarily. The all-flights levy is quite rational and what we have got are ministers prepared to listen to it.”
The Association of Atol Companies said it was encouraged by government comments that flight-plus was just a “sticking plaster” ahead of more fundamental reform including extending Atol to airlines.
Support Every Seat Safe
“If the government is serious about creating a simple and comprehensive system of financial protection for customers buying travel product, it must make every seat safe. We believe the airlines should provide protection for the sale of their own product.”
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