Contiki growth exceeds target: Hunt

Contiki growth exceeds target: Hunt
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Contiki has claimed it is on track for a record year with the youth operator reporting significant growth across its product range – with the exception of New Zealand.

Speaking to Travel Today at the launch of its Europe 2013/14 program, managing director Fiona Hunt said the firm has almost doubled its target growth this year, with most programs recording strong increases.

But New Zealand continues to struggle, she said.

“New Zealand has been difficult for us this year, but I think it’s been difficult for everyone,” she said. “It’s a small market relative to our other product so it’s not something we’re worried about specifically.”

Every other destination has experienced “very strong growth” including Australia, formerly a problematic area for the operator. New music festival itineraries have helped drive business locally, Hunt said.

While she attributed much of the company’s success to its “digital engagement” with consumers, the former Google manager insisted the trade continues to play an important role in its “multi-channel approach”.

“Our focus is on allowing the consumer to purchase us any way they want to,” she said. “We’re watching trade and direct channels very carefully to make sure that one doesn’t cannibalise the other, but both are growing”

The Europe brochure features 10 new itineraries across Contiki’s Time Out, Concept and Camping tour styles, plus the addition of WiFi on all Contiki-owned coaches. Small group cruising in Turkey and Croatia has also been added.

Pricing remains “on par if not slightly better” than last year, Hunt added.

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