Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Travel & Tour Nowhere

Has cricket tourism reached its saturation point? The news that Travel & Tours Anywhere, the Barmy Army's licensed operator, has ceased trading with its membership revoked last month by ABTA will surely change the way travel groups do business in the future.
Poor World Cup sales forced TTA to close, but the Ashes Down Under also proved to be a loser. This also applied to the many travel groups who sold packages to Australia. The prices were simply too extreme to follow all five Tests. The initial mass demand for tickets never materialised and individual travellers from the UK cottoned on to this after touts were left holding batches of tickets for the 2003 Rugby World Cup Final. For those wise independent fans, it was the same for the first four Tests in Australia where it was more than easy to obtain face value tickets for every day of the Tests.
Tourism industry insiders have revealed to this blogger that saturation point has already hit tour companies and the news that cricket's biggest army has just lost its tour arm only proves that.
*It remains to be seen if the ICC see sense, too, in making the group stages of the 2011 World Cup free entry. Only then will fans afford the 40-day jamboree proclaimed by Malcolm Speed for the Asia tournament.