Travel Agents

Why selling luxury is the best remedy for agents during tough economic times

When the economy is going through a rough phase, the tourism industry is not immune to the impact of this.

The reaction for many consumers is to tighten their purse strings and cut back on things such as travel and holidays, making travel seem like a tough sell to agents.

Disappointing economic data for Australia over recent months has given the Reserve Bank reason to lower its growth forecast for the country’s economy to three per cent this year and 2.75 per cent in 2020.

Falling house prices and weaker consumer spending have been flagged as the main domestic economic risks, while one economist has tipped the Aussie dollar to fall to 60 US cents this year.

However, in amongst all these doom-and-gloom predictions, there is a golden opportunity for travel agents to get on the front foot and thrive.

You see, while the overall tourism market takes a hit during tough economic times, there are still customers out there with money to spend that want to enjoy the fruits of their labour with a little bit of self-indulgence.

It’s these types of customers that make the luxury travel market an easy and lucrative sell for agents, according to the Council of Australian Tour Operators managing director Brett Jardine.

“For agents, it is important to firstly define luxury as the term can mean different things to a wide range of consumers,” he told Travel Weekly.

“When it comes to high-end holidays, where luxury is a common term, retail agents shouldn’t be afraid to invest a little more time in identifying potential from within their client base.

“The high-end client is generally more discerning and will appreciate a greater investment in time and attention. The reward for agents will arrive in the form of higher commission from generally more inclusive product.”

 

Inspiring luxury

Inspiring Journeys is one tour company that’s making it even easier for agents to capitalise on the luxury sector.

Built on four pillars – ‘Discover’, ‘Explore’, ‘Immerse’ and ‘Relax’ – Inspiring Journeys prides itself on offering the perfect balance of freedom from the stress of holiday planning, with the flexibility for travellers to shape their personal journey.

Each itinerary is designed to be catered to customers’ tastes by offering a range of authentic and enriching experiences off the beaten track.

Lasting from five to 22 days, the tours visit some of the most idyllic, breathtaking and iconic locations in Australia and New Zealand in a small group of up to 20 travellers, with no children under 12.

Standley Chasm (Inspiring Journeys)

Inspiring Journeys has thought of everything to make even the pickiest and demanding travellers as comfortable as possible.

Aside from being fully air-conditioned, its luxury coaches also include reclining seats, footrests, panoramic windows, an on-board restroom, phone chargers free WiFi, and complimentary drinks and snacks.

Inspiring Journeys also provides free arrival and departure transfers between designated airports and hotels. And, expert journey directors and/or driver guides will take care of everything else, so travellers can sit back, relax and enjoy.

 

Top tips for selling luxury

For those agents out there who are keen to tap into the lucrative luxury space, but are unsure of how to go about selling it, Inspiring Journeys head of sales Jasna Stevanja has some simple yet valuable tips.

Firstly, Stevanja recommends agents do their homework and find out what’s important to the customer and what luxury means to them.

“Identify and highlight those things and how what you are offering can give them that feeling of luxury through what’s important to them,” she explained.

Stevanja said agents should also highlight the value of what customers are buying and how it’s a good buy for them.

“Find out the key thing they want to experience, highlight that this is most likely a once in a lifetime thing, do it in style and make it as memorable as possible.” she said.

“Follow these tips and the tough economic times will soon become a lot easier for you and your agency.”

SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

Road & Rail

Tourism

Kiwi rail journey provider closes outdoor carriages due to dangerous selfies

Passengers’ risky behaviour in search of the ultimate selfie has forced the closure of some iconic train viewing platforms.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Travel Agents

Afterpay expands into travel with lay-by holiday offering

by Christian Fleetwood

Travel Weekly’s editor is planning to lay-by a holiday as soon as he finishes paying off a Hot Wheels Corkscrew Crash Track Set from Kmart.

Share

CommentComments

Road & Rail

At least 29 people killed in Madeira tourist bus crash

by Ali Coulton

The driver reportedly lost control of the bus before it plunged off the road and rolled down a hill.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

India’s Jet Airways collapses due to funding shortage

by Huntley Mitchell

It’s turning out to be a day of collapses this fine Thursday, with the office chair of Travel Weekly’s editor having just given way to his posterior.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Etihad to operate entirely plastic-free flight for Earth Day

This Earth Day, Travel Weekly is committing to slapping single-use coffee cups out of the hands of at least three commuters on our way to work. They’ll thank us when they recover from the burns.

Share

CommentComments

Technology

Expedia to no longer be a controlled company following new acquisition

Online travel behemoth Expedia has broken the shackles and surfaced from its parent’s basement looking rather healthy, rather than malnourished and disheveled.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

One in five Aussies admit to missing their pets more than their kids when they go away

Pet owners across Australia are no doubt preparing to say tearful goodbyes to their furry life partners before going away this Easter, while simultaneously flipping off their kids.

Share

CommentComments

Travel Agents

Agent wrap: Qantas Holidays rewards premium agents, Bench Africa famil + more!

Does seeing all the famil pictures in our agent wraps make you green with envy? Take comfort in the fact that you don’t have to come into work for the next four days. We know we are.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Hotel wrap: Preferred hotels & resorts new members, Australia gets a second voco + more!

We took a 10-minute break from scoffing Easter eggs to bring you up to date with all the latest hotel openings and deals. You’re welcome.

Share

CommentComments

Events

Tourism

Travel Agents

Wholesalers

Why you need to attend the Amazing Tastes of Thailand roadshow

The Amazing Tastes of Thailand roadshow is just around the corner! Here’s why YOU need to be there.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Carnival cruise ship rescues dozens of people adrift at sea

A Carnival cruise ship has gone all Baywatch and saved the day by helping rescue a vessel carrying more than 20 passengers adrift in the Gulf of Mexico.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

WTF? Air stewards are selling unwashed uniforms on eBay

Inspired by this story, Travel Weekly’s editor is attempting to sell a pair of his unwashed Calvin Klein briefs on Gumtree, all for a low, low price of $1.25 plus shipping.

Share

CommentComments