The Association of Canadian Travel Agencies (ACTA) has launched a new survey for travel agencies, host agencies and independent travel advisors to share their current debt level and confidence in their capacity to repay government loans by Dec. 31, 2023.
The Canada Emergency Business Account (CEBA), Regional Relief and Recovery Fund (RRRF), and Highly Affected Sectors Credit Availability Program (HASCAP) are the focus of the survey.
Travel and tourism businesses accessed these federal loan programs en masse during the pandemic. However, tight repayment terms are now proving to impede travel business recovery across Canada, ACTA says.
The survey is open to all travel agencies, host agencies, and independent travel agents.
“We are also seeking information on preferred solutions for repayment, including increased loan forgiveness, extended repayment deadlines, and modification of loan terms,” said Wendy Paradis, ACTA's president, in a press release.
HASCAP loan repayment dates vary depending on the terms individual travel businesses would have established with their lending institution.
The loans were made available to businesses during the pandemic by Canadian lending institutions and are 100 per cent guaranteed by the Government of Canada.
“Our members and the travel industry as a whole continue to experience a very slow pace of financial recovery due to pandemic debt incurred. Escalating operational costs and unpredictable inflation are also a significant additional burden and making it impossible to repay federal loans by the current deadline,” said Paradis.
“We believe that with the first two financial quarters of 2023 now behind them, travel agencies, host agencies, and Independent Travel Advisors have timely data and perspective to share with respect to their debt levels, confidence in their ability to repay the federal loans, and preferred public policy solutions to assist their recovery,” she added.
ACTA will aggregate the responses and no individual travel businesses will be referenced, the association says.
Click here to take the survey. The deadline to complete survey is Friday, July 28 by 3pm EST / (Noon PST).