From 1/7/2014 always check your travel agent has insurance to cover you if they go broke!!
It’s no longer compulsory!!
MAIN POINTS ABOUT NATIONAL TRAVEL REFORM – 1/7/2014
From 1st July 2014, a travel agent will be able to take money from customers without needing to have consumer protection insurance, in case the travel agent goes broke. That means any money you give to a travel agent (to book your holiday) who doesn’t have travel agent and intermediary failure insurance (TAIFI), could be lost forever and you wouldn’t get your money back. Plus there is no longer a requirement that the travel agent puts your money into a trust account!
From 1st July 2014 it is not compulsory for travel agents to be accredited. There is a new voluntary accreditation scheme knows as the Australian Federation of Travel Agents (AFTA), Travel Accreditation Scheme (ATAS).
Clearly the vast majority of travel agents are law abiding and wish to continue having the trust of the general public. They will be accredited and leave the consumer insurance. It pays for you to ask for insurance details prior to paying over your hard earned travel money. That includes online travel agents as well.