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One In Four Consumers Have Been Misled By Travel Agents


17 SEPTEMBER 2009: One in four UK holidaymakers do not trust travel agents, according to an independent survey of over 2,000 consumers by Opinion Matters.

The research, which was commissioned by independent health and safety expert, Check Safety First, cited that over 25 per cent of consumers, who booked a holiday through a travel agent, felt that their trip didn’t accurately reflect the description in the brochure.

Check Safety First logo
Check Safety First logo

“If you think back to 15 years ago, the only way you could book a holiday was through your local travel agent, whose brochures and advice you had to trust. Now holidaymakers don’t need to rely solely on travel agents’ advice and can read honest, unbiased opinions from travellers who’ve recently visited the hotel,” explains Steve Tate, chairman at Check Safety First.

The research found that people aged 35-44 years old were most likely to have been misled by travel agents, at nearly 30 per cent. Travel agents in the south were named as the most untrustworthy (48 per cent), by the survey respondents.

“I would encourage people to do thorough research into their holiday destination by looking at both independent travel advice websites and travel brochures and not solely relying on one source of information.  Only then can consumers make an informed judgement about where to go on holiday,” continues Tate.

Check Safety First works with UK hotels, advising on health and safety best practice and helping ensure that the highest standards are established and maintained.  Once a hotel has successfully demonstrated and maintained a high standard of health and safety using Check Safety First’s E-Cristal system it will be listed on the consumer website

For further information on the research, please contact


About Check Safety First
Check Safety First supplies health and safety risk management audit systems to hotels, holiday properties and restaurants around the world.

The company enables these organisations to meet and exceed local and international legislative and best practice requirements for health and safety, through the implementation of HACCP and compliance management systems. Check Safety First also offers training, ongoing assessment and appraisals in accordance with the Cristal Mark, a standard developed in line with World Health Organisation’s guidelines and the benchmark for food safety since its launch in 1997.

In November 2007 the company launched Via Cristal, a health and safety system developed specifically for overseas holiday properties. Based on the best practice principles of the Cristal Mark, Via Cristal enables property owners to mitigate the risk of guests becoming unwell or injured during their time in the accommodation by providing comprehensive health and safety guidelines backed by annual audits.

All hotels and holiday homes that meet the company’s stringent criteria are listed on, the only resource which provides the travelling public with access to a database of venues that have obtained health and safety excellence.

Check Safety First is a member of the Foreign & Commonwealth Office’s ‘Know Before You Go’ campaign and an ABTA Travel partner. The company’s global network is headquartered at The Wine Warehouse, The Back, Chepstow, Monmouthshire, NP16 5HH, UK.

For further information contact:
Jo Jamieson / Angela Woodward / Hannah Humphreys, Berkeley PR
Tel: 0118 988 2992