After years of ignorance, Ryanair have finally realised how many agents were booking their flights and packaging them into holidays, due to the heavy use of credit card surcharge avoidance techniques via virtual booking cards. Hence, in some ways the trade can only blame itself for the aggressive two pronged attack on travel agents Ryanair has launched this month, because in colloquial speak, the industry have “had Ryanair’s trousers down and given them a good financial spanking”
On the Beach off the back of their move to offer ATOL protection to its customers have now decided to allow customers to pay for their holiday 30 days before departure rather than the traditional 90 days still offered by its competitors.
Cynic’s in the industry claim that this because the customers funds are protected in a trust fund and can not be used to fund marketing. Hence, if it can not be spent, why collect it?
To Luke Pollard/ Andy Cohen
Cc Mark Tanzer
Flight Plus TOMS VAT
Luke, as discussed on the phone I am concerned about HMRC seeing Flight Plus as an opportunity to broaden the net of TOM’s VAT to include travel agents that are dynamically packaging. I therefore think its imperative that ABTA as our industry body, seeks written guidance from HMRC as to “exactly” what contractual arrangements must be put in place once Flight Plus ATOL’s are introduced in April 2012.