The Advantage Travel Partnership and the Association of Women Travel Executives have joined forces to create a ‘Travel Support Bubble’ to offer emotional support to fellow travel industry professionals.

The partnership was announced on Friday ahead of World Mental Health Day on Saturday and has been set up in particular to support women in the travel industry who are “significantly more vulnerable to redundancy or minimal income potential”.

Activity will include a weekly open forum starting on Friday, October 16, where participants can share issues.

The forum will be hosted by Advantage chief executive Julia Lo Bue-Said and AWTE chair Claire Osborne, who are also calling on fellow professionals “to offer their services to women in need and urging everyone to get in touch if they feel they would benefit from a friendly ear from an industry peer”.

Lo Bue-Said said: “My team are speaking to desperate agents everyday who are literally losing the will to continue the battle to save their businesses.  Six months is a long time to be at the coal face of a crisis with zero support from the government, and for many of our members there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel.

“Whilst Boris, Rishi and Grant continue to ignore us, we want to show our agents – many of whom are women – they are not ignored by the industry.  We hope the Travel Support Bubble will help bridge the gap for those of our colleagues at the end of their tether and provide like-minded souls to offer support and empathy when they need it most.”

Osborne added: “AWTE has been supporting women in business in the travel industry for over 60 years and never has the need been greater to show solidarity than now.  This is more than tears of frustration from our members and network, this is actual despair.

“Things are looking very grave for many working in the travel industry and we have seen this have a huge effect on the levels of anxiety and depression across the board.

“Anything we can do to support our fellow professionals is a step in the right direction, as we have people on the edge of a precipice and we want to help in whatever way we can.”