ABTA chief executive Mark TanzerWe now have an opportunity to redefine the financial system we operate in for the benefit of the industry.

Last month, the European Commission launched a review into the Package Travel Directive. The review asked for opinions from the travel industry on the level of financial protection consumers should expect from agents and operators.

The failure of customflights.co.uk last week, with the warning from the Air Travel Trust fund over “illegal packages”, only serves to highlight the issue.

ABTA is consulting with members to inform and prepare a response on their behalf. I urge all members to fill in the questionnaire we sent out this week. And everyone involved in organising travel should also participate in this review.

The industry needs to be clear about what protection it believes consumers should have and what should be covered by a revised European Union directive. The Commission is seeking views on whether standalone airline tickets should also be covered by this law.

Decisions must be made to establish whether single elements bought separately, or from the same or connected websites, should be automatically covered
by reformed legislation.

This is an important piece of legislation that could have a significant impact on our business. It gives us a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to shape the future of travel regarding consumer protection. It should provide clarity and we need a law that is fit for purpose for the way the industry works now and will work in the future.

Members should complete the survey by Wednesday December 23. Email: ptd@abta.co.uk. Non-members should go to the Package Travel page of the the European Union website.