Adventure World shrugs off vertical threat

Adventure World shrugs off vertical threat
By admin

Adventure World remains unfazed by a growing tendency by agency chains to sell their own product, claiming few operators have the expertise or partnerships in its range of destinations to compete.

Executive general manager Andrew Mulholland told Travel Today that the wholesaler’s long-standing partnerships on the ground and specialised reservation team gave it the edge in the eyes of agents.

“Our destinations are exceptionally hard to sell and they require heavily specialised staff,” he said. “If our competitors enter those markets, then so be it but we often find that they enter and then retract.”

NRMA tourism and leisure chief executive Brian Evans added a high turnover of staff in the large agency chains also increased the opportunities for Adventure World.

“Let’s face it, Flight Centre turns over about 45% of its agents a tear, so you’ve got a new batch of people coming through,” he said. “That’s where we come in”.

The firm spends a lot of time working with retailers to educate new staff, he added.

Meanwhile, the trade continues to be important. Mulholland revealed the firm was committed to presenting its product well online to stimulate interest, but it still does not offer online booking.

“It’s far better for me to get a customer through an agent in contact with our consultants,” he said, emphasising the complexities of putting together a tailored itinerary.

But he did not rule out the possibility of introducing a booking facility to the Adventure World website down the track.

“In the future, that’s a capability that we would be remiss not to develop,” he said. “Certain customers demand it.”

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