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easyJet Holidays Reiterates Commitment and Support to Travel Agent Partners in Northern Ireland

easyJet Holidays Reiterates Commitment and Support to Travel Agent Partners in Northern Ireland

easyJet Holidays CEO Garry Wilson
© copyright Matt Writtle 2019

easyJet holidays has expressed its solidarity and support for its travel agent partners, including those in Northern Ireland, in light of comments made last week by UK transport secretary Grant Shapps. Speaking at the announcement of the country’s new traffic light system for travel, he referred to travel companies as “what people would have called travel agents in the past.”

The travel industry responded with predictable annoyance: ABTA – The Travel Association – called the comments “ill-judged and ill-informed” and said they  “simply do not align with the facts.  Travel agents are very much here and make a vital contribution to both the UK economy and to consumer confidence in travel.”

Garry Wilson, easyJet holidays CEO, commented “We absolutely believe in independent travel agents and ever since we launched our brand-new business it was always really important to us to work together. We think now more than ever, given how uncertain some people are feeling and how confused some are about the steps and requirements you need to follow to travel, that trusted travel agents will be who people turn to, to book their holidays. Throughout this year we’ve been launching initiatives to support our trade partners, help share materials to boost consumer confidence, we’ve implemented flexible booking options and celebrated the high street stores re-opening as lockdown restrictions have eased. And we stand side by side with our partners once more. Thank you for all you do.”

Dame Irene Hays, Chair of Hays Travel, the UK’s largest independent travel agent, added “We were of easyJet holidays’ first partners since their trade launch and we’ve been working closely together since then. It’s great to see the commitment from easyJet holidays to the independent travel trade and the high street. It’s also given our customers even more choice and our shops all over the UK have been at their busiest over the last week or so. What’s clear is that people are trusting a reputable travel agent to look after them, some for the first time.”

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Fionn Davenport is the editor-in-chief of the ITTN group, including ITTN and ITTN Ireland. He's one of Ireland's best-known travel journalists and writers, with nearly 30 years' experience writing guidebooks for Lonely Planet and others.

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