The Guardian has highlighted the need for urgent government support for the coach tourism sector in an article published online following an interview with CTA. The article includes extensive quotes from CTA chair John Wales who argued for coach tour businesses to be treated the same as other leisure industries that have received state fiscal support like restaurants, hotels and pubs.
“The key action we are looking for from government is to recognise coach tour operators as leisure businesses,” says John Wales. “We are aware that many of our coach operator members are being denied support that is being made available to other tourism businesses in terms of rates relief, which is crazy; our members’ whole business is about tourism and leisure.
“Coach operators are understandably aggrieved when they see billionaire airline owners go cap in hand for support from the government, when the largely family-owned coach tour sector delivering holidays for millions of customers is unrecognised and unsupported.”
The Guardian story has also been covered in TTG and Travel Weekly And an earlier article in The Telegraph also highlighted the challenges facing coach tour operators and focussed on the need for the government to provide clear and practical advice on how coach tourism could be re-started.
CTA is continuing its work lobbying for a fair deal for coach operators and has recently submitted a paper to DCMS (Department for Culture, Media and Sport) outlining the impact of the Covid-19 lockdown on the sector and arguing for a range of targeted support measures.