The Commission for Aviation Regulation (CAR) has completed the spring 2019 licensing round for travel agents and tour operators. A total of 91 travel agents were licensed in this round – while two more have applied to have their licences renewed but do not yet have a licence. Twelve tour operators have had their licences renewed to 30 April 2020, while 24 others are due for renewal on 31 October 2019.
The two travel agents that have applied to have their licences renewed but do not yet have a licence are Greenlife Tours Ltd (0756) and Robert Kilkelly (Travel) Ltd (0158).
Two travel agents did not apply to have their licences renewed: Friends of the National Gallery (0712 – voluntarily letting licence lapse) and E Travel Ireland Ltd (0708 – business transferred to Core Travel 0548).
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Based on applications received, travel agents have indicated a projected licensable turnover of €609 million for the year ahead (down 4.1% from €635m in 2018). The projection for tour operators is €2.3 million (up 21% from €1.9m in 2018).
The reductions in the number of licenced entities and turnover are based on the fact that under Directive 2015/2302 (Package Travel Directive), which came into force on 1 July 2018, companies established in other EU member states are now regulated from the member state in which they are established and can trade in Ireland without needing a licence provided they have sufficient insolvency protection in place in their country of establishment – but they must provide evidence of same to the Commission. The net effect of the Directive is that EU established companies no longer need to be licenced separately in Ireland.
Twelve such entities, previously licenced by the Commission up 30 April 2019, no longer hold an Irish licence:
- Broadway Travel Services (Wimbledon) Ltd
- Dnata Travel (UK) Ltd
- Jeka Holidays Ltd
- GBT III B.V
- Great Rail Journeys
- ch AG
- Jetline Travel Ltd
- Travel Solutions of Belfast Ltd
- Truly Travel (Ire) Ltd
- Ulster Travel Ltd
- Virgin Holidays Ltd
- World Travel Centre Ltd