Abta has renewed its call for urgent sector-specific support for travel, warning the coronavirus pandemic – and government measures to mitigate its effects – risks more than 90,000 travel jobs.
The association’s latest member survey found 20% of roles in the outbound travel sector, as many as 39,000, have already been lost or placed at risk – rising to in excess of 90,000 when factoring supply chains into the equation.
The situation is also forecast to get worse over the coming months with many businesses – more than three-quarters, according to Abta – yet to enter into redundancy consultations with staff.
Abta has written to chancellor Rishi Sunak setting out a new Save Future Travel plan, which aims to rebuild consumer confidence, seek tailored support for the sector, and save jobs at a "critical point" for the sector with the furlough scheme set to be wound down at the end of October.
According to Abta, despite nine in ten businesses in travel tapping the government’s job retention scheme, 65% have already had to make redundancies, or have started the consultation process.
However, four in ten businesses believe travel can return to 2019 levels by 2022 "if offered the right support by government".
If it doesn’t, 83% of travel companies believe a lack of action will have a serious or critical impact on their business; 96% said a second economic shutdown would have a serious or critical impact on their ability to survive the crisis.