Our entire industry is suffering and in need of extended government help. Without it, many companies and individuals won’t be there when the recovery happens.
But there’s only one way this will happen. Each and everyone of us can help! Don’t just sit back and expect others to do it for you. Get involved!
Do your part
ACTA has made scripts available for travel agents and independent contractors and agency owners to call and write to their MP and their MPP and explain the impact of the COVID 19 pandemic on travel agencies. Explain how commission recalls have made the situation even worse. Details are on the ACTA website.
If every single travel agent calls their MP and their MPP and writes letters the government will be more aware of the plight of the industry and aware that travel agents are an integral part of the travel industry – so that when they consider airline aid packages, they recognize that travel agents must be acknowledged too.
ACITA – the Association of Canadian Independent Travel Agents has also been conducting a grassroots campaign and getting some attention.
Aid programs currently available
There have been some wins so far – and ACTA deserves a lot of credit for lobbying hard with the federal government and provincial governments since last March asking for extensions of the various subsidies and measures.
The recent Fall Economic Statement included the following “wins” for travel agents and travel agencies:
The Canada Recovery Benefit – CRB is extended to March and needs more lobbying to be extended to June 2021. Thousands of travel agents currently rely on this.
- Increase the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy --CEWS to 75% to March 13, 2021.
- The Canada Emergency Rent Subsidy --CERS program extended at the current 65% base rate through to March 13, 2021.
Creation of the Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program --HASCAP --100% government-guaranteed loans for businesses including travel agencies providing low-interest loans of up to $1 million for up to 10 years.
The Canada Emergency Business Account --CEBA program will be expanded, allowing access to an additional interest-free $20,000 loan, with half of this additional amount forgivable if repaid by December 31, 2022.
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