Triton bosses say they have held ‘constructive’ talks with ABTA in a bid to ensure independent travel agents are better represented by the association.


The meeting follows complaints by independent agents that ABTA no longer cares about smaller travel agents – with the recent hike in subscription payments described as the ‘last straw’ – and calls for a Triton representative on the association’s board.


Triton chairman and Advantage chief executive John McEwan and Worldchoice chairman Colin Heal met ABTA’s chief executive Mark Tanzer on Friday. 


Confidential proposals made at the meeting will now be discussed at the next ABTA board meeting, said Heal.


Heal added: “Mark [Tanzer] listened very carefully to our views and some very constructive suggestions were made. He realised that many independent agents question the value of ABTA and their perception is that they are under-valued compared to some of the bigger players. 


“He did also accept there was a need for some changes and he will be putting proposals before the board at the earliest opportunity.”


He would not reveal the specific proposals to be discussed by the board, or whether this would include having a Triton board member on the ABTA board, but said: “There are lots of different ways of skinning a cat.”


Heal also claimed the recent subscriptions hike was ‘the straw that broke the camel’s back’ for many Triton agents.


Tanzer agreed the meeting was “useful”. He added: “We discussed ways in which ABTA can make sure policy issues of the consortia members are fully addressed.”


The next ABTA board meeting is on July 24.