Agents, operators and the Civil Aviation Authority will be pushing the importance of financial protection to consumers next year.

Advantage sales and marketing director Colin O’Neil said the consortium will be sending out a direct mailshot to around 360,000 households via Advantage branded members at the end of January.

He said: “(The mailshot will advertise) the security and financial protection of booking through an independent travel agent.”

Association of Independent Tour Operators chairman Derek Moore said the association is hoping to come up with an advertising strapline, which members can add to their own publicity material, highlighting the fact that customers booking with its members will enjoy 100% financial protection.

He said the scheme should be introduced next spring, adding: “If travel agents sell product of an AITO member, we want to make it clear to them that that the consumer will have full protection.

Meanwhile the CAA is working alongside the Department for Transport and the Office of Fair Trading on a campaign to publicise consumer financial protection ideally for spring.

A CAA spokesman said the process had been delayed by XL Leisure Group’s failure in September and would await the conclusion of a DfT review of the collapse.