In December 2012, a majority of the states and territories approved a Travel Industry Transition Plan which removed travel agent licensing and the related compensation scheme operated by the Travel Compensation Fund. The Travel Compensation Fund continued to provide compensation to travel clients who suffered a loss when a travel agent collapsed and failed to account for money paid by the customer up to and until 30 June 2014.
With effect from 1st July 2014, a voluntary accreditation program called ATAS (AFTA Travel Accreditation Scheme) is in place. There are a number of significant differences between these two arrangements, with the major difference being that financial protection of consumer funds is no longer guaranteed whilst in the hands of a travel intermediary including travel agents. Therefore, prior to requesting a booking and before making payment to any travel intermediary (whether ATAS accredited or not), TravelManagers recommends you check that adequate processes and proof of these processes are in place to ensure your funds are protected against travel intermediary insolvency or embezzlement.
At TravelManagers Australia we are committed to protecting our customers’ funds. Read on for a summary of how we offer what we believe is the most comprehensive and transparent financial protection in the Australian travel industry, and why you can trust TravelManagers and its Australia-wide personal travel manager network with your hard earned money:
All client payments, either by credit card or direct deposit, are directly deposited into an Australian audited client trust account with ANZ Banking Corporation ( BSB: 012 172 / Account: 4967-59407) and are held in trust until payment is made directly to each contracted travel supplier. Under no circumstances will TravelManagers accept cash payments, nor should your payments be made to any other bank account.
As part of our procedures in providing you with comprehensive financial surety TravelManagers has a Travel Agent Client Trust Account Fidelity Insurance (TACTAFI) policy via Lockton Companies Australia Pty Ltd, part of the Lockton Group, the worlds largest privately owned insurance brokerage. The policy is underwritten by Liberty Specialty Markets and the Australian operation is a branch of Liberty Mutual Insurance Corporation which is rated A (Strong) by Standard and Poors, global credit rating agency. This insurance protects your funds in the unlikely event that they are missing from, or not paid into the Insured Trust Account as a result of fraudulent or dishonest activity. If you wish to check that this insurance policy is in place please contact Lockton Companies Australia Pty Ltd, on 02 8366 2200. Protection is provided by Liberty Mutual Insurance Corporation and is subject to the terms and conditions of the policy. Each claim will be determined by Liberty Mutual Insurance Corporation on a case by case basis and, in some circumstances, insurance may not be available or declined. A copy of the policy is available on request.
Other companies may claim they have TACTAFI insurance, however it’s important to understand that a TACTAFI policy is only valid when a properly maintained client or trust account is kept. The Directors of TravelManagers Australia engage CIB Accountants, an accredited chartered accounting firm, to independently audit and review TravelManagers Client Trust account. The Directors of TravelManagers Australia make available copies of these ‘Independent Audit Reports’ to you for total peace of mind. This together with our TACTAFI insurance provides you with the total comfort that your funds are secure in trust until payment is made to the relevant travel supplier.View the 'Independent Audit Reports'
TravelManagers is accredited by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) to directly issue tickets on behalf of all major airlines. In granting such accreditation IATA requires audited financial oversight and applies strict financial criteria which are reviewed annually.
In the event that you are unable to obtain a refund of monies paid for your travel through your own travel insurance or your banking institution, you may be eligible to make a claim on the TravelManagers Customer Fund (TCF). The TCF is a self-financed fund, whose monies are held in a separate legal entity, TravelManagers Customer Fund (TCF) Pty Limited, which is designed to protect you against the risk of an Approved Supplier not providing the Approved Services which you have paid for, because of the financial failure of the Approved Supplier. Funds accumulate every month, are effectively ring-fenced from TravelManagers’ general cash provisions, and are set aside for the sole purpose to reimburse TravelManagers’ PTMs’ clients in the unlikely event that an Approved Supplier fails financially. The TCF is not insurance and nor is it a replacement for travel insurance. You should take out comprehensive travel insurance for every trip you take. Visit our TravelManagers Customer Fund page for more information and full terms and conditions, and you can see a list of Approved Suppliers here.