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Departments: Travel Agents

Volume 461: debated on Friday 15 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how much her Department and its agencies paid in travel agencies’ fees in each year since 1997. (139903)

The Department for Communities and Local Government and its predecessor, the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, were created following Machinery of Government changes on 5 May 2006 and 29 May 2002 respectively.

The Department (and its main predecessor the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister) uses one fee-based travel agency contract administered by the Department for Transport at a combined annual fixed rate (since July 2005) of £50,000. Individual Departments’ elements of this annual fixed rate are not separately identifiable. From May 2002 to July 2005, travel agent’s fees were paid at 1.5 per cent. of contract turnover, an average figure of £12,500 per quarter.

It is not possible to identify separately fees for other travel contracts used by the Department, as any such fees are built in to the individual ticket prices.

The Department’s Executive agencies have separate procedures for making travel arrangements, but have advised that they have not paid any travel agent fees during the period in question.