AFTA view

TOM Manwaring, Interim Executive Chair

TOM Manwaring, Interim Executive Chair, Australian Federation of Travel Agents

As we move ever closer to those magical thresholds of 70% and 80% of the eligible population vaccinated and the National Cabinet’s Roadmap to Recovery escalates towards travel and a more normal lifestyle, AFTA is putting the time and focus into making sure we are ready as an organisation and a sector to meet the challenges of the new future.

We are grateful that so many of our members have endorsed our approach. Even with the heartbreaking loss of an estimated one third of jobs in our sector, we are pleased to report that over 80% of members have renewed, with additional commitments to join. Given the current landscape, this surge of support is a huge vote of confidence in AFTA’s impact and approach.

The core theme to our call for Federal, State and Territory support is the reality that ours is a sector that has been in hard lockdown since March 2020. Given this, we need sector-wide application of the support measures that are increasingly being enacted for those businesses in geographic lockdowns. Quite apart from the immediate and overwhelming revenue kneecapping of the international travel ban imposed 18 months ago, is the sector paralysis that flows from lockdowns in Sydney and Melbourne.

We need support and we need it until travel normalises, because now more than ever without a travel agent you are on your own – and that’s only going to become even more the case as we all start to travel more widely!

AFTA also continues to call for faster rollout of the vaccines and to promote all measures that encourage more people to get jabbed more quickly. In addition to our own #GetTravelReady campaign and our collaboration with AFTA member Linda Forster’s #VaxReady campaign, we have also thrown our support behind the #GiveTravelAShot campaign. These are incredibly challenging times yet there is a constant — the resilience of the wonderful people who make travel all that it is. We’re not going anywhere and AFTA is determined to keep doing what we can, where we can, to make that happen.

Subscribe To travelBulletin