TAAI (Travel Agents Association Of India) released an official statement regarding the impact of coronavirus on the travel and tourism industry. The statement reads as follows:
With the impact of Covid19 (Corona Virus) spread all over the globe, travellers are scared, panicking and are cancelling their upcoming trips. Events are being cancelled, flights are being curtailed, attractions are being shut, hotels and immigration authorities are scanning passengers. Corporates are also putting their travel plans on hold which shall expose their employees to unknown risks, globally. This is the worst catastrophe tourism industry has ever faced when business has virtually come to a standstill.
TAAI has already appealed to the Ministry of Civil Aviation, DGCA, IATA, all airlines and other stakeholders to consider the situation on humanitarian grounds and pass necessary instructions for date change waivers as well as cancellation policies on a compassionate basis.
“Health and life of customers are of the utmost importance”
This is a global concern, being not a political or an economic issue and should be considered in the interest of all. Many airlines have responded in the positive and have sent us the updated policies. Others have escalated to their global head offices for consideration. Health and life of the customers are of utmost importance, but the policies of the airlines, hotels and other vendors are being adhered too and the customers need to understand the same until such waivers are received, we are not in a position to activate the same.
TAAI and its member agents request that travellers need to be patient. Acting as agents for the airlines and other vendors, it is beyond our limitations to offer waivers without the approval from the principals being airlines, hoteliers and other stakeholders. We are awaiting review from the government, airlines, hoteliers and all concerned to reconsider their policies of refunds and cancellation charges.
We urge consumer travellers to have faith in TAAI and its members, as we ensure that we shall work towards the betterment of all concerned.