Agent campaign group TARGET wants travel companies to stop reporting unsubstantiated increases in bookings and says members have threatened to put repeat offenders on stop-sell.
A number of companies have said they’ve seen a bookings surge since changes to quarantine rules were announced, with many giving percentage increases but no actual figures.
TARGET is concerned these headlines wrongly give the impression travel is starting to boom and means pleas for Government help will go unheard.
It has also accused those shouting about percentage increases of ‘stabbing agents and other travel businesses in the back’.
TARGET Co-Founder Jill Waite said: “It is so annoying to see figures of 4-500% increases in bookings.
“These statements will destroy our chances of getting more financial support from the Government, who will think that everything is now fine.
“We all know that is not the case and targeted sector specific support is still needed to get us all through to next year.
“So many people in the travel industry have worked so hard to contact their Members of Parliament and the media to get the message across as to why travel needs sector specific support.
“This opportunist statements by travel companies are irresponsible and selfish.”
Ms Waite added: “A number of TARGET members have contacted us and said they will not support any travel company that behaves in this way. These actions are stabbing travel agents and other travel companies in the back.
“Without sector specific support, hundreds of travel companies and travel agents will not survive until next year.”
She also called on trade bodies to tell members not to issue such misleading claims.
TARGET Co-Founder Graeme Brett added: “The Government seems to think that these changes to quarantine are enough to save the travel industry and the false bookings claims support them.
“They are totally wrong. We need an independent survey of customers to present to Government to prove that there is still a substantial resistance from customers to travel.
“The trade bodies cannot allow the Government to wash its hands of our industry’s problems. They have to step up the pressure.”