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level 16, 324 queen st,
brisbane qld 4000
+61 7 3235 0400

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40-42 scott st,
dandenong vic 3175
+61 3 9794 2600

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level 7, 600 bourke st,
melbourne vic 3000
+61 3 8615 9900

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level 21, 20 bond st,
sydney nsw 2000
+61 2 8298 9533

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wow travel case summary
overview

Wow! Travel operates a travel agency business and has done so since 2003. It owns the registered word mark WOW in class 39 for advisory services relating to travel; travel consultancy; travel tours and cruises.

Wow Tours provides staff-supported specific holidays and/or tours for people with disabilities and has operated since 2011.  In 2017, Wow Tours’ below mark was advertised for acceptance.

Wow! Travel opposed the trade mark application claiming the trade mark incorporated their WOW trade mark in it and was for identical services.

decision

The Delegate refused registration of the Wow Tours mark on the grounds that:

  1. Wow! Travel’s registration of the “WOW” mark covers “travel tours” at large, of which the disability supported tours are a subset.
  2. The trade marks are deceptively similar due to:
    • the word “tours” has no distinctive value and should be disregarded; and
    • the device element part of the logo, while distinctive, didn’t change the central and dominant part of the trade mark, being the word “WOW”.
  3. Wow! Travel was the first to use the mark in respect of similar services and has continuously used the similar trade mark in respect of those services since that first use.
key takeaway

Including additional words or devices might be insufficient to distinguish a mark from a similar trade mark where the central and dominant part of the marks are the same.