CATO scheme on track

THE Council of Australian Tour Operators’ (CATO) new accreditation scheme for land supply operators unveiled in June this year has received a major boost following news that Journey Beyond has hopped aboard as a founding member.

The decision by the experiential operator to join CATO’s new program will also see the company exit the AFTA Travel Accreditation Scheme (ATAS), with Journey Beyond Chief Commercial Officer Peter Egglestone reassuring the decision in no way diminishes its commitment to travel agents.

“CATO’s new accreditation scheme is specifically designed for the land supply sector and thus provides a far better fit for our business and its iconic products,” he said, adding that the travel trade had played an “instrumental” role in its COVID growth strategy.

Last month saw almost 20 participants withdraw from ATAS, a combination of voluntary withdrawals and travel businesses going bust. Meanwhile, the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA) has accepted and accredited over 50 applications from new members in recent months.

Journey Beyond’s Indian Pacific travelling through the Blue Mountains, NSW ©Journey Beyond