With less than a month to go before the 2014 Football World Cup kicks off in Brazil, ABTA is reminding fans looking to book last minute travel to do so with reputable travel companies that are members of ABTA.
Tens of thousands of England fans are expected to head to Brazil for the tournament either to watch the games or simply to soak up the atmosphere. This is despite ongoing unrest in the country with both strikes and demonstrations planned in dispute against the cost of the tournament and the lack of investment into public facilities and services.
Major sporting events are a popular target for fraudsters because of the typically high value of these trips. With tickets, hotels and air tickets at a premium, last minute bookers looking for bargains are particularly vulnerable to being ripped off.
The City of London Police have reported that during 2013 ten per cent of all incidents of holiday booking fraud related to packages in particular trips to major sporting and religious events**.
Victoria Bacon, ABTA head of communications said: “We are expecting tens of thousands of fans to head out to Brazil and have a wonderful time soaking up the World Cup atmosphere and enjoying this vibrant country. Fans heading out last minute should ensure they book with a reputable travel company who can take the hassle out of travelling to Brazil. As well as offering financial protection these companies will be able to advise on things such as vaccinations and passport requirements. It’s also vital that fans take out adequate travel insurance and follow Foreign Office advice regarding health and safety.”
Brazil is growing in popularity with UK tourists – and was highlighted by ABTA as a destination to watch in 2014. ABTA research also found that four out of ten of people think Brazil is a beautiful destination, one in five consider it a glamorous party destination, and one in ten of people said it was a ‘must visit’.
ABTA has tips for fans heading to Brazil or anyone planning a trip at abta.com.