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Monday, 24 July 2006

Comments

Colin

"Is marketing, then, just luck masquerading as active listening and effective communication?".

I think that may well be right. A really interesting post and one that many UK travel agents would do well to read.

I agree that travel agents should now become "advocates" for travellers, passing on their knowledge, expertise, "vision" and all the other things you mention.

In the UK travel industry, (which is quite unique in that almost all of our clients travel "out" of the country to other countries resorts), we are fighting a battle with our Tour Operators who, using their own websites, are trying to reduce our commissions on sales, as well as taking as many of our clients as possible by undercutting us. So the traditional travel agent/tour operator business model is being quickly eroded and may soon disappear.

Those travel agents who can access an Air Tour Operators Licence, (ATOL), are now by-passing the Tour Operatots by "dynamically packaging" their own holiday. By being able to purchase seperate hotel/accommodation, flights and transfers, the go-ahead agent is now becoming a tour operator in their own right. Thus meeting the challenge head on as well as creating business that before he/she would not have had. So, in this case, opportunity has come out of adversity.

Travel Agents can see this as a great worry, or, they can see this as a really exciting period of creativity, diversification and ultimately greater prosperity.

Its so exciting to think of all the developments we have seen over the last year or so with regard to the travel industry. Its'even more exciting to think we will be doing things in a year from now that we didnt' know we were able to do because the "things" arent' actually here yet!!

Hope that makes sense?

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