Abta welcomed the Package Travel Directive (PTD) exemption for business travel, something the association said it had “been working towards since the beginning of the revision process”.
The Council of Europe formally adopted the final version of the directive yesterday.
The directive’s provisions will not apply to travel arrangements purchased on the basis of a ‘general agreement’ between a travel firm and a traveller for the purpose of corporate travel.
Abta pointed out: “Most travel management companies (TMCs) operate on the basis of agreements with corporate clients covering either a specified number of travel arrangements or a set period of time.”
It said: “Abta fully expects such agreements to come within the scope of the ‘general agreements’ envisaged by the directive.”
The association’s head of public affairs Stephen D’Alfonso said: “Abta has worked very hard with the EU institutions to ensure business travel was removed from the scope of the directive.
“We are pleased to see our arguments have been listened to and that members selling business travel will be able to do so without the burden of legislation which has been primarily designed to protect consumers.”
He added: “We will be working with the UK Government to ensure our members are able to operate within a sensible regulatory framework as the implementation process begins in the UK.”
D’Alfonso told Travel Weekly: “We wanted to make sure businesses trading in this area would not be caught [by the directive] and the Commission took heed of the arguments we put forward.”
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