Astindo Lauds Early Communication by Govt on Year-end Travel Curbs
24 November 2021 08:46 WIB
TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Indonesia Travel Agents Association (Astindo) commended the government's early communication regarding travel restrictions during the Christmas and New Year's Eve holiday period that allowed industry actors to adjust their activities according to the enforced curbs.
"I agree with the government's decision and commend their early communication," Astindo deputy chairperson Anton Sumarli told ANTARA on Tuesday.
Sumarli reiterated Astindo's support to preventive measures taken by the government to prevent a surge in COVID-19 cases, especially as information on the measures was disseminated early to industry actors, thereby leaving no room for confusion on the industry and dispelling the false impression of the government's inconsistency.
"What we need is clarity in regulations that have been drafted by the government after thorough consideration," the deputy chairperson stated.
Sumarli cautioned that a sudden regulation change would trigger mass confusion, especially for travellers that would have to apply for refunds, as their vacation were cancelled and travel agents would potentially be overwhelmed by multitudes of refund requests applied simultaneously.
The uncertainty experienced by travel agents is also detrimental to the industry, as they are compelled to check the enforced regulation daily to anticipate new policies that force abrupt changes in their activities, he added.
"I commend the government's preparedness at this time, and I am optimistic that the announced regulation would not change in future, and no new restrictions would suddenly be announced by the authority," Sumarli stated.
Regulation clarity would allow travel agents and travellers to prepare their activity timetable to celebrate year-end festivities, he affirmed.
"We hope regulation clarity would allow travellers to prepare and enjoy their vacations better," Sumarli remarked.
Earlier, Minister of Tourism and Creative Economy Sandiaga Uno clarified that the year-end travel restriction by designating the entire country under level 3 of the activities restriction enforcement (PPKM) was not aimed at restricting tourism activities.
"Instead, the level 3 PPKM was imposed to ensure strict health protocol adherence by limiting tourism premises' activity hours and visitors' capacity during the Christmas and New Year's holiday period," Uno stated at a press briefing in Jakarta on Monday (Nov 22).
The uniform PPKM level enforced nationwide aims to prevent a surge in COVID-19 cases during the year-end holiday period, he added.
"We wish to avoid the COVID-19 case surge trend that always occurred after major national and religious holidays in Indonesia," the minister stated.