A travel agency boss who said that A Current Affair presenter Tracy Grimshaw needed “ a big punch in the face ” from reporting her show about the industry while the corona virus has stepped down.
Jayson Westbury, general manager of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents, resigned on Wednesday after criticizing the host for her comments on the travel industry’s woes.
An agency spokesman said Mr Westbury’s resignation follows “his recent comments addressed to Tract Grimshaw and the coverage of the travel industry’s response to the corionavirus.”
Current Affair presenter Tracy Grimshaw (pictured) has reported the travel industry’s refund scandals
Jayson Westbury, president of the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (pictured), told members in an online seminar that A Current Affair presenter Tracy Grimshaw ‘needs to get a solid uppercut or slap in the face’ to make a series of negative stories about the industry. He immediately backtracked and said he didn’t mean it literally
While emphasizing that his comments should not be taken literally and apologizing publicly to Ms. Grimshaw, Mr Westbury has also acknowledged that under no circumstances were the comments inappropriate or unacceptable, and also contrary to AFTA’s opinion and its affiliated companies and agencies, “said a statement on its website.
It comes after Mr. Westbury sounded Tuesday about the report of the veteran TV presenter during the pandemic.
“Things have continued this week,” he said, referring to ongoing ACA coverage of the industry’s struggle to refund customers for canceled airline tickets and accommodation.
“I’ll never watch it again (A Current Affair). I think Tracy Grimshaw should get a solid uppercut or a slap in the face, and I mean, of course, I wouldn’t want to hurt anyone.
“But, I mean, some of the behavior and some of the language used in that program is just outrageous.”
“There are quite ordinary stories about A Current Affair going on about members of AFTA, look as far as I’m concerned no one is guilty of anything.
Since the coronavirus crisis was declared a pandemic in early March, the global travel industry has been decimated.
According to Pew Research, more than 90 percent of the world’s population now lives with some form of travel restrictions.
Anyone entering Australia from abroad must now be quarantined for 14 days. Pictured: stranded cruise ship crew sent home on repatriation flights in Sydney
In Australia, even regional domestic travel in most of the country is prohibited from slowing the spread of COVID-19.
Because potential vacationers are massively canceling their pre-booked trips, some have been unable to get a full refund from their travel agents.
The age reported that a midwife in Melbourne “ cried for days ” after being out of pocket and losing half of the money she spent to book a $ 20,000 dream vacation to Europe and Disneyland.
In the audio, Mr. Westbury said he wants to discuss these issues in the A Current Affair program to share the industry’s side with the story.
“We do what we can from the point of view of talking to their producers and various reporters,” he said.
“We have said very clearly that we will be on the program, but only if it is live.
“I am not willing to have a pre-recorded (interview) for them to cut and paste the pieces they would like to fit their story and they are not so happy about that, of course.”
Australian residents returning from India are accompanied by a member of the Australian Navy
Australian law firm Slater and Gordon has filed a class action lawsuit against major airlines, travel agents and travel agents that have refused to return money and opted for travel vouchers and credits instead.
“We understand that everyone is doing hard right now, including major airlines and travel companies, but that doesn’t excuse them from taking advantage of their customers,” said Andrew Paull, leader of Slater and Gordon Practice Group.
The law firm believes that large travel providers may have breached their legal obligations by introducing travel check schemes that significantly disadvantage their clients.
“We believe that cash refunds should be returned to customers, who now almost certainly need that money,” said Paull.
Why you NEVER get a refund from Virgin Australia: Airline plans to hand over credit to customers instead of cash for canceled flights
Hundreds of thousands of Virgin Australia customers who have dropped out of pocket due to canceled flights may never see their money back.
The controversial airline stopped providing refunds and travel credits on flights that were at the root of the coronavirus pandemic after it was voluntarily administered in April.
Accounting giant Deloitte has received 340,000 refund requests from customers since it took over control of the airline in financial distress after 65,000 flights were canceled between March 1 and April 30.
Administrator Vaughan Strawbridge has proposed to compensate affected passengers with ‘Conditional Travel Credit’ instead of cash refunds in a declaration under oath filed with federal court on Tuesday.
Virgin Australia passengers who have been refunded for canceled flights may not get their money back. The photo shows passengers checking in at Brisbane Airport on April 21, the day the airline went into tight administration
The credit is valid while the airline is in administration.
Customers who have not claimed or used their credits during the process are “unlikely to receive a 100 percent refund on restructuring or liquidation.”
“The contingent credit scheme allows those customers to realize 100 percent of the value of their repayment by using the credit for a future flight or vacation package,” the court said.
Mr. Strawbridge added credits “were necessary to maintain as much goodwill as possible in connection with the Virgin brand and business for a buyer.”
The decision on whether to grant Virgin travel credit or a refund is up to the new owners.
The coronavirus pandemic led to the collapse of Virgin Australia. Pictured is an empty Virgin Australia check-in area at Brisbane Airport on April 21
“Potential buyers may be motivated to renew these contingent loans as part of a restructuring or recapitalization of Virgin Companies’ operations with the aim of preserving and enhancing customer goodwill associated with Virgin Companies,” said Mr. Strawbridge.
Of the 19 parties that expressed an interest in purchasing the airline, eight have signed nondisclosure agreements to access Virgin’s books.
Apollo Global Management, Oaktree Capital Management, Indigo Partners and BGH Capital are among the potential buyers.
The judicial request also aims to limit the administrator’s liability for Virgin’s debts and for essential services such as ground handling, fuel, maintenance and on-board catering.
The case will be heard in federal court on Wednesday.