iTreks controversial social media campaign is dead

first_img<a href=”” target=”_blank”><img src=”;cb=INSERT_RANDOM_NUMBER_HERE&amp;n=a5c63036″ border=”0″ alt=””></a> iTrek, an Australian travel insurance provider, has decided to withdraw its social media campaign, ‘Travel Agents Are Dead’ after receiving criticism from the industry.The idea of the controversial campaign was for travellers to submit a YouTube video around the theme “The Travel Agent is Dead”. AFTA Chief Executive Jayson Westbury told e-Travel Blackboard, “[The campaign] was never appropriate … I find it disgraceful that they were able to denigrate the profession in the way that they did.”Mr Westbury said that he doubts such a negative campaign would have a lasting effect on the industry. “I would have been surprised if it had much of an impact. Most regular Australian consumers would have found it repulsive.”“It was basically saying buy your insurance from us, but we don’t really care how you get there. It was ridiculous.”President and Chair of the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA), Chris Russo said: “On behalf of our more than 10,000 members across the world, we are extremely pleased to learn that iTrek has stopped the negative campaign. “Admitting a mistake is never easy, but we all make them. We thank iTrek for a sound decision. And, we are most grateful to TravelGuard for its efforts in bringing this campaign to an end and publicly reaffirming its commitment to travel agents. Russo continued: “Travel agents are far from ‘death;’ in fact, all signs indicate a healthy industry. Today’s travel agents offer outstanding services through both personal contact and their Web sites. “Rather than shunning the Internet and progress, travel agents have embraced online technology, not only in promoting themselves and their services, but in assisting their clients in finding the best value and travel options to suit their needs.“As a result, despite the ability to book travel on their own, many people are now returning to a more traditional form of travel planning. “And the online travel agencies have added a live, call-in option where consumers can speak directly with travel agents in support of their Internet-focused businesses. Convergence of personal service and technology is the order of the day and in the end, consumers benefit across the board.” Source = e-Travel Blackboard: C.Flast_img read more