The government must develop its Tourism Recovery Plan “without delay”, the Save Future Travel Coalition has told the minister in charge.
The coalition, which comprises 15 travel associations and trade groups, has written to Oliver Dowden, secretary of state for digital, culture, media and sport. Dowden’s department includes tourism minister Nigel Huddleston.
The Coalition points out that the Tourism Recovery Plan was recommended by the Global Travel Taskforce last November and referenced again in the Taskforce’s report earlier this month.
In their letter, Save Future Travel stressed the plan must recognise the significant value of both outbound and inbound tourism as part of the UK’s overall tourism mix.
Emma Wade, Abta’s public affairs manager, said: “It is important that this plan is developed without delay, outlining clearly how the international travel industry will be supported as the UK’s recovery progresses.
“Within it, the Tourism Recovery Plan should demonstrate how, through financial support to the sector, government can level the playing field with our direct competitors across Europe who have received such support, and also UK industries such as hospitality, leisure and the arts.”
The letter argues for a targeted package of financial support for the sector and a communications campaign “to instil confidence in consumers around the eventual return of travel”.
It also calls for an extension of the Youth Mobility Scheme to EU Member States to safeguard overseas jobs and continued support for Refund Credit Notes.
Dowden is also urged to commit to an “urgent” review of future consumer financial protection measures, “recognising the inconsistencies that exist in UK consumer financial protection, especially between airlines and the organised travel sector”.
“The Tourism Recovery Plan should recognise that every element of the UK’s tourism mix – domestic, inbound, and outbound – brings enormous benefits to the UK economy, UK businesses, and UK residents,” said Wade, adding: “We look forward to hearing how government intends to move forward with its development.”