ABTA is to launch a nationwide advertising campaign, running from January 4, 2017 until the end of February, in response to the growing issue of fraudulent websites, online scams and non-compliant travel companies that have no financial protection in place.

The advertising will promote ABTA’s ‘Travel with confidence’ message and encourage consumers to book with an ABTA Member during the busiest holiday sales period of the year.

The campaign will target families and older travellers – the groups most likely to book holidays early – and advertising will run on radio, in the Sunday Times and online. It will be supported by a dedicated ‘Travel with confidence’ hub on abta.com and an online competition.

There will be further activity targeting younger holidaymakers in the summer.

Mark Tanzer, chief executive of the travel association, said: “Over the past year, we have dealt with over 160 cases relating to online scams or to businesses that are trading in direct competition with ABTA Members but are not providing financial protection to their customers. Our Members have reported a significant increase in these kinds of fraudulent, non-compliant activities, so our advertising campaign will be encouraging all holidaymakers to stop and think about the company they are booking with.

"The ABTA brand already enjoys excellent public recognition, with 76% of people feeling more confident booking a holiday with an ABTA Member. Our new campaign aims to deepen people’s understanding of the many benefits they receive when they book with an ABTA travel company, and I would encourage all members to ensure that they are using the ABTA logos and branding so holidaymakers are reassured that they can travel with confidence.”

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