Dr Naledi Pandor made a public statement in yesterday’s inter-ministerial briefing calling on travel agents not to “exploit” travellers during the COVID-19 crisis.
As the body representing over 90% of South Africa’s retail travel community, we wish to highlight that nothing could be further from the truth. We would further like to take this opportunity to ask Government for its assistance on the matter, which I will outline below.
For several weeks, many of the world’s airlines have refused to provide cash refunds for travellers who have had to cancel their travel plans as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. Airlines’ refund policies are beyond the control of travel agents. In fact, travel agents have been left in the middle trying to secure funds from airlines to pay back to their customers.
There is absolutely no question that South African travel agents have been exemplary in these unprecedented times, which have left them with no income for the foreseeable future and very little support from the airline community which is currently holding the monies that have been paid over
for tickets not flown.
Read the full letter to the President here.