“Reports of our death have been greatly exaggerated” Travellers Choice MD on agents

“Reports of our death have been greatly exaggerated” Travellers Choice MD on agents

With the rise in popularity of OTAs, it’s pretty easy to get caught up in the doom and gloom surrounding speculation about the future of brick and mortar travel agents.

But according to a survey carried out by Travellers Choice, the future is looking bright for travel agents!

A whopping 36 per cent of agents surveyed said they anticipated adding on another staff member or even opening an additional location in the next year.

The figure rose to 44 per cent when the time frame was shifted to between four and seven years.

We sat down with the Travellers Choice managing director, Christian Hunter to find out what he made of the findings.

“These bullish results are a major vote of confidence in Travellers Choice and its ability to drive business through its members’ doors,” Hunter said.

“The fact that our members’ are comfortable planning so far ahead also reflects the kind of stability our group offers.”

“That stability I believe is only possible with a group owned entirely by its members – rather than faceless shareholders or wealthy individuals – who alone control its strategy and share in its profits”

Hunter said the results say a lot about the perceived rivalry between traditional retail agents and OTAs.

“I think they reinforce the message that traditional retail travel agents have been repeating for more than 20 years, namely, that reports of our death have been greatly exaggerated.”

“The fact is that traditional travel retailers and OTAs have successfully operated alongside each other – independently and in partnerships – for more than two decades, and I see no reason why that would change.”

The survey also revealed that 99 per cent of respondents are ‘satisfied’ or ‘more than satisfied’ with their membership of the national network.

Hunter rules this overwhelming response up to the corporate office helping support its member’s to capitalise on growth opportunities.

How are they managing to do this?

“By developing and delivering tools – particularly in areas such as digital marketing – that enable our members to effectively engage with new and existing customers. And by providing them with the sort of unique products and services that their customers want and need.”

“These results provide us with a better understanding our members, who are of course our customers.”

“The more we understand their plans for the future, the more effectively we can tailor our products and services to reflect what they want, rather what we think they might want.”

Latest News

  • Aviation

Korean Air signs MoU with Boeing to upgrade and expand its widebody fleet.

Korean Air has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Boeing at the Farnborough International Airshow to upgrade and expand its widebody fleet. The airline has announced its intent to procure 20 Boeing 777-9s and 20 Boeing 787-10s with options for 10 more of the largest 787 Dreamliner variant today (Monday). The signing ceremony was attended […]

  • Technology

Australian agents responded quickly to Crowdstrike crash

Local travel professionals and businesses moved quickly into action to provide support to the many Australians whose travel plans were thrown into chaos on Friday and into the weekend. The chaos was the result of the flow-on effect of the suspension of check-in services and flights domestically and globally. A blue screen with the outage […]

  • News

Booking.com and Airbnb named as the preferred booking platforms of digital nomads

A new YouGov Survey has found that booking.com and Airbnb are the most popular booking platforms for digital nomads. For this poll a ‘Digital Nomad’ was defined as someone who travels freely for an extended period (at least one week), while working remotely using technology and the internet. YouGov Surveys have found that almost one […]

  • Attractions
  • Food & Beverage

Singapore Airlines has been announced as the first airline partner of Taste Port Douglas

Singapore Airlines has been announced as the first airline partner of Taste Port Douglas food festival presented by Sheraton Grand Mirage Resort, Port Douglas. The Taste Port Douglas Takeover Series now has a presentation partner in Singapore Airlines and features Michelin star chef, Michael Wilson from Singapore marking this the first time the festival has […]

  • Food & Beverage

Exciting culinary experiences across Asia

Here is a look at some exciting experiences across Asia to enhance traveller vacations in iconic cities across the continent. The Mai Restaurant at Meliá Chiang Mai Located on the 21st floor of the iconic hotel, the Mai Restaurant has launched a Thai-inspired afternoon tea for two that pays tribute to the Baan Tawai Wood […]

  • Regional
  • Tour Operators

On Foot Holidays launches Ligurian Hills hiking tour promotion

Australians can explore Italy’s Ligurian Hills on foot on a self-guided, inn-to-inn hike with Onn Foot Holidays new promotional rates. Liguria is a coastal region in north-western Italy near the French border, known for its mountains, rolling hills and seaside ports. On Foot Holidays’ seven-night holiday begins with two days of walking through vineyards and […]

  • Products

Mandarin Oriental takes a dive into swimwear with $360 board shorts

If you were inspired by The Inspired Unemployed’s Liam Moore limited-edition pair of Budgy Smugglers but want a bit more coverage, then here’s your chance. The Orlebar Brown brand has introduced an original design of the Bulldog swim short for Mandarin Oriental hotels – yours for a snip at US$242.25 (AU$360). They have been “designed […]

  • Health & Wellness
  • Luxury

Trisara showcases sustainable dining via wellspring program

Phuket-based resort Trisara is transporting guests from resort to farm to table then back again courtesy of a new limited-time program, Wellspring. The package is a collaboration with Tri Vananda, a US$182 million (AU $270 million) wellness community in northern Phuket, conceived by Montara Hospitality Group, the owners of Trisara. In addition to entitling guests […]