MoneySavingExpert.com Travel Board
Travel Agent Code of Conduct
Many travel agents and advisers use this forum and voluntarily give up their time to help other MoneySavers. However as these are professional people who make their living out of deals; to ensure there’s no conflict of interest, I’ve drawn up the following Code of Conduct for agents posting. Martin
- Please read the MoneySavingExpert.com articles first. Your first port of call for cost cutting tips should be the Cheap Flights, Haggle Down Your Holiday Costs and Travel Insurance articles and the Flightchecker.
- Travel Agents are very welcome on this board and are thanked for the time and effort they put in to help users. While it’s not this site’s policy to allow use of the boards as a medium for gaining business, information on how to save money is always welcome.
- Travel Agents’ signatures. If travel agents want to add a signature about being a broker to their post it should be:
[FONT="]I am a Travel Agent [/FONT]
[FONT="]My company’s ATOL/ABTA numbers are xxx. MSE doesn't check my status as a Travel Agent, so you need to take my word for it. ATOL numbers can be checked with the Civil Aviation Authority
. This signature is here as I follow MSE's Travel Agent Code of Conduct.[/FONT]Please use this exact text and font, colour and display and enter your ATOL/ABTA numbers. You should be able to copy it and post it directly into the signature Wysiwyg. For info the top line is in Verdana size 2, the rest is in Times New Roman sized 2. If the system won't let you because of the hyperlink please email [email protected] and explain the issue.This should be the only text in your signature. There should be no other notes or other hyperlinked text. Travel agents that do not choose to use this signature should not be PMing deals or indicating they are a travel agent in any other way in their posts.1.) Travel Agents’ Profiles. Travel Agents may have the name of their business and a single link to their website in their profiles. However even within their profile it should not be encouraging users to contact them (i.e. no ‘contact me if you’ve a problem’ or ‘happy to help').2.) Travel Agents should not tout for business on the boards or in PMs. There should be no posts or unsolicited PMs offering travel deals. Nor should agents ever say ‘see my profile for who I work for’ or make any other such comment. However if a user requests their service either via PM or forum post, then I have no objection to that and the business generated. Yet if someone requests the service by a post on the board, the agent should simply post to say “I will PM you” rather than posting details there.Any travel agent found to be flouting this ‘no touting’ rule will potentially lose their rights to post on the forum (PPR). This applies whether the agent is using a signature or not.3.) Travel Agents should not recommend other Travel Agents. To prevent accusations of reciprocal help or deals, travel agents should not be recommending other agents. If a poster is asking for recommendations, it is best left to non-agents or they should be referred to the MSE article.4.) Non-agents have valid opinions too. Travel agents should be mindful that non-agents can have valid opinions on holiday deals too, and this forum isn’t an ‘agent-only zone’. 5.) Travel agents may not post/sell deals in any way except in the Blind-Quote thread. This site is not a place for travel agents to try and sell their products/wares/or even services in any way. A special exemption is made in the Beat My Quote thread but even there it is only to be by pre-solicited Private Message. Any travel agents posting in that thread MUST use the travel agents special signature as above.5.) The site will err on the side of the agents following the code. As agents obeying the code are under much more stringent rules than normal posters if agents are following rules 1 to 5 of the code of conduct this site will (resources permitting) be supportive. If posters are trying to stop the flow of information and disrupt it (which includes simply linking to site articles without reason/reasoning) as opposed to simply disagreeing on info or advice the site abuse team will err on the side of agents.Of course all users of the Forum are subject to the site’s terms and conditions. Should anything in this code of conduct conflict with those terms and conditions, the terms and conditions shall prevail.
IF YOU FEEL AN AGENT (OR POSTER) IS BREACHING THIS CODE. PLEASE REPORT IT TO [EMAIL="ABUSE@MONEYSAVINGEXPERT.COM"][email protected][/EMAIL].
(DO NOT REPORT IT IN THE THREAD BELOW)
Martin Lewis, Money Saving Expert.
Please note, answers don't constitute financial advice, it is based on generalised journalistic research. Always ensure any decision is made with regards to your own individual circumstance.