AFTA dismisses possible glut of tour operators

first_imgThe Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA) is unconcerned by a possible “rash” of new tour operators entering the market, with chief executive Jayson Westbury saying the barriers to doing so were too “complicated”.  Speaking to members of the Council of Australian Tour Operators’ (CATO), Mr Westbury said any future wave of new agents flooding an industry regulated by a voluntary accreditation scheme was unlikely.“The barriers by nature of our structure are pretty big,” the AFTA boss said, highlighting such hurdles as store leasing, bank credit and ticketing accreditations.  “If every Tom, Dick and Harry wants to become a travel agent, if they can make a buck out of it, I say good luck to them.”Mr Westbury went on to shrug off a potential increase in business failures, saying that “any new arrangements of voluntary accreditation would carry no more risk that we currently have”.    More concerning for the industry, according to the AFTA boss, is a changing distribution model, with business alliances such as the new Jetstar/Agoda partnership creating an uneven playing field by moving operations offshore. Meanwhile, it was announced that the entire Jetset Travelworld Group had committed itself to AFTA, adding 400 members to the organization and bringing its total membership to more than 2,800. Source = e-Travel Blackboard: M.Hlast_img read more