The Philippine Travel Agencies Association (PTAA) warned the public against fly-by-night travel agencies that have proliferated with travel becoming increasingly available to most Filipinos.
This developed as the PTAA is reviving plans to open a travel agency school as a means to increase the manpower pool and further professionalize the industry.
Marlene Dado Jante, PTAA president, said operations of the group’s members are affected by those posturing themselves as legitimate travel agencies but without the necessary permits, accreditations, and trainings.
“We want the public to closely check the credibility of a travel agency before doing any business with them. People should be very wary of these so-called travel agencies with zero or very questionable track records. It not only puts their travel at risk but also impacts the reputation of legitimate travel agencies,” Jante said.
She added: “PTAA members have all the necessary government permits, have existing offices, networks and partners, and are continuously receiving regular professional and educational development programs from our association to further expand their operations and improve their services.”
Jante said PTAA is concerned that there are now groups offering those who want to start a travel agency with very enticing packages that include having operations started from day one at a very minimal cost.
Part of the pitch of these groups includes airfare and ferry ticketing capability for domestic and international destinations, hotel bookings, and tour packages that have sizable returns per booking.
There are also promises among such groups that those who will avail can do this travel agency business home-based or from anywhere in the country.
Jante said PTAA will coordinate with the Department of Trade and Industry, Department of Tourism, Securities and Exchange Commission and local government units to trace these groups and suspicious travel agencies to have their operations stopped.
“Courtesy of Malaya Business Insight”