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Travel Agent Fraud Reported

ImageTravel sector executives said there have been several cases of fraud by travel agents due to the economic crisis and subsequent liquidity crunch.  General Manager of Air Choice Travels in Abu Dhabi said only small agencies, sub agents, and those selling airline tickets illegally are having serious problems. 

Fais Mohammed explained “some agents are facing liquidity problems because payments from their clients, especially in the real estate sector, are delayed.”  He said “If the agents don’t pay the airlines on time, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) will stop extending credit to them and they will go out of business.”  There was a recent report of an agent who bulk booked return tickets for several customers then attempted to flee after accumulating huge debts.  A travel industry official explained the agent would offer steep discounts on tickets with only marginal profits, then because of tight liquidity, would cancel the return leg of the trip.  
 

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