CHOICE membership

Post Covid-19 Travel Deals - Buyer beware

There is a glimmer of hope domestic travel might be on the way back. One quick look at ABS travel data suggested more Aussies go over seas for holidays each year than visitors come to Australia. We also spend more on our OS holidays and stay longer, average 22 days compared to typical domestic holidays of 6 days average.

For the Aussie economy, for those of us who can, taking our next years holidays at home could just solve the loss of international tourists.

The one and only Flight Centre, or rather
Ignite Holidays Pty Ltd (“ Flight Centre Exclusives “, “we”, “us”) ABN [86 119 314 377](tel:86 119 314 377),
is keen to go.

Offers include.

It is worthwhile checking out the T&C’s for how this special offer responds to recent concerns if a refund is required. Mostly! It appears all the risk is with the purchaser, unless DFAT issues a travel advisory warning against travel (cl32 per T&C). Likelihood Cairns will become a foreign destination?


Great stuff.


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I’d suggest an appropriate and polite term for anyone prepared to give this a shot would be ‘brave’ :wink:


Yes Minister!


If you are going to take holidays in Australia, why do you need a travel agent at all, never mind Flight Centre (don’t forget they were in trouble before COVID-19 struck)?

Of course there are some advantages in buying a package tour, but it is really not that hard to book flights or a hire car plus accommodation yourself, especially as people are even more internet savvy after the lockdown than they may have been before. And people could use the time remaining to experiment with searches and places they may like to visit within their state since state-wide travel may be the first easing of distance restrictions.


Totally agree Karen

It’s so easy to book directly and I personally can’t see what value an agent provides. The pandemic has demonstrated that booking through an agent offers no additional “protection” for travellers.

As avid domestic and international travellers, my partner and I research and book our own flights, accommodation, and tours. There’s comprehensive and accurate information available online, and many sites have Q&A sections for travellers to ask and respond to specific queries (eg best place to stay with children).

Where possible, we also book directly with the travel/ tour operator rather than through an agent, as the “standard” travel agent commission is now 25-30%, which I consider outrageous for making a booking that I can make myself in several clicks.

With our 2020 holiday cancelled due to the pandemic, we’re now planning some Aussie getaways in regional Qld and WA for early 2021. Domestic tourism has been hard-hit by the pandemic restrictions and border closures, particularly outside the major cities, so we’re planning to support regional operators (guest houses, restaurants and tour operators) who rely on tourism and the many hospitality and accommodation employees who’ve been doing it tough this year.


Welcome to the community @Dee4802

99% of the time I am in violent agreement. The remaining 1% is when an agent knows how to do something that one could either not do themselves or web sites won’t let you do it.

An example is an around the world ticket with side excursions that are not explicitly allowed in the basic RTW fare. I found an agent in SA who knows how to ‘paste together’ the RTW fare with local return excursions, all on the same ticket so the airlines ‘own’ any delays or missed connections. The fees are folded into the fares but seem sharp by comparisons.

Prior to finding them another agent failed miserably and broke the RTW trying to piece a desired itinerary together. The smart agent delivered a premium economy RTW including coach excursions from hubs in the EU for $3,500 each; ‘another agent’ recommended by a friend quoted $4,700 for an all coach itinerary.

The quality and experience with any particular agent (not just any agency or chain) can be huge. Maybe there is a way to book a RTW multi-class fare with non-complying side excursions on the same ticket by oneself, that I have yet to learn how to? That written, I avoid agents for all travel where I know how to do it myself, that I can do it myself.