Travel Agents

“Travel agents are limited”: Webjet MD

Hannah Edensor

Hannah Edensor

Webjet Limited’s Managing Director John Guscic has released a report on the Australian Stock Exchange, which was presented at the UBS Emerging Companies Conference on Technology.

Guscic had a lot to say about the state of the travel industry, taking yet another dig at agents similar to this one a week ago.

In response, Flight Centre’s Skroo Turner responded that Webjet and Airbnb were not “a concern” to them and that the personalised agent experience still trumped OTA offerings.

In his presentation, Guscic said within our industry, there is a “highly inefficient process ripe for disruption”, and in many instances, between the traveller and the hotel company, for example, there can be as many as five participants involved in the sale.

Webjet also claims that data mismatches occur in around five per cent of all bookings.

“Currently, the perfect leisure travel experience does not exist, online or offline,” Guscic said.

Offline travel agents are limited by whatever tools, processes, and content are made available to them – as well as their own experiences, knowledge and commercial drivers. This information, content and tools vary greatly by agent.

“Online travel sites today focus mainly on the mechanics of travel and less about the overall experience.

“While efficient, comprehensive and convenient, online sites assume the traveller has inherent knowledge what is need to create the perfect itinerary.

“A solution is needed to assist the traveller in truly realising their holiday dream…from beginning to end.”

Guscic claims Webjet’s next challenge is Artificial Intelligence, which would allow them to “build on the transactional online travel experience”.

“We have the opportunity to transform the existing leisure travel shopping experience to something exceptional,” the presentation stated.

[AI] will provide both the transactional and the inspirational – guiding the traveller from idea inception, to booking, to experiences throughout the journey, until they are home and ready to travel again.

TravelManagers have also snapped back at Webjet’s previous claims that “the underlying role of the traditional travel agent is arguably in decline”.

Chairman Barry Mayo said, “It was the internet, the great enabler of modern connectivity that created the opportunity for Online Travel Agents to evolve and ironically, it was also the Internet and related technology enhancements that also created the opening for TravelManagers and the personal travel manager concept to be born.

“Travel is one sector that is very much moving forward. TravelManagers choose to embrace rather than fight the digital revolution and by using the Internet as an effective business tool the company has grown and prospered exponentially.

Service is the key in this internet age with the personal travel manager genuinely looking out for what is in their clients’ best interests.

“Providing individual tailor made experiences, and having your own personal travel manager is what sets a personal travel manager apart from many traditional travel agents and sole online providers.

“Our personal travel managers do more than just book flights and accommodation, our commitment is to ensuring clients have the best travel support and experiences.

We have examples of personal travel managers who personally drive their elderly or long standing clients to the airport, create pop-up shops at travel clubs and one instance where a client forgot their passport and their personal travel manager collected it from their house and delivered it to them at the airport, and they managed to get on their flight.

“It’s going above and beyond and delivering exceptional personal service that truly delivers to clients’ needs and ensures clients for life.”


SEE WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING

3 responses to ““Travel agents are limited”: Webjet MD”

  1. Webjet is so full of it. They have never offered all choices of airlines/flights & fares. To even think so, is ludicrous.
    There are plenty of examples, where multi-city itineraries can’t be searched for online ANYWHERE.
    Plus, there are plenty of travel companies who have allocations of cheap seats, at prices never made available to the public or via OTA’s.

  2. ps. Travel Agents. Don’t get mad, get even. AI is not limited to the online world. Our objective is to use AI to put the Agent back into Travel. Let’s talk!

Leave a Reply

Cruise

Tourism

Travel Agents

Digital travel ad impressions up 40 per cent says Nielsen Ad Intel

Looks like your marketing team’s efforts are paying off, with ads views climbing dramatically in Australia following the most recent lockdown.

Share

CommentComments

News

Tourism

OMICRON: WHO urges those over 60 to cancel travel plans as SA tightens restrictions

The UN health authority warned countries that blanket bans don’t work, while an Aussie epidemiologist says the government’s current restrictions won’t make much difference.

Share

CommentComments

Wholesalers

Planeterra launches holiday fundraising for community tourism

Not sure what to get your colleague for Secret Santa? They’ll be hard-pressed to complain about a donation in their name to support community tourism projects.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

WATCH: Rebel Wilson stars as glam castaway in new Tourism Fiji ad

The Aussie actress channels Tom Hanks’ Castaway in this latest campaign for Tourism Fiji, However, we’re not convinced Hanks could pull off the metallic dress as well as Wilson does.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Club Med opens first Canada property, reveals plans for new Utah ski resort

Those who enjoy the ease of an all-inclusive resort stay will be stoked to learn about Club Med’s latest spate of winter wonderland offerings.

Share

CommentComments

Cruise

Norwegian Cruise Line unveils its largest deployment in history

Batten down the hatches because NCL has released its 2024/25 line up including brand-new homeports in Haifa, Israel and La Romana, Dominican Republic.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

US flight attendants rush back to self-defence in face of rising passenger unruliness

In order to avoid a drunken sky-high fight club breaking out, crewmembers are taking to the studio to keep the peace.

Share

CommentComments

Hotels

Accor introduce global portfolio of boutique hotels and luxurious resorts, Emblems Collection

A new line of luxury hotels and resorts are what we need to bring the world out of the global pandemic and into an opulent fantasy that only a Disney princess could think up.

Share

CommentComments

Tourism

Bali had 6.3 million tourists in 2019, in the first 9 months of 2021 it had 43

With tourism rates in Bali so low, we imagine that even Schapelle Corby would be gladly welcomed back.

Share

CommentComments

Destinations

Tourism

Destination NSW Launches Vibrant “Feel New Sydney” Campaign

Destination NSW unveils “Feel New Sydney” work. Just don’t expect the locals to be pleasant or let you in when driving.

Share

CommentComments

Aviation

Destinations

News

Tourism

Fiji welcomes first flight of international visitors in 20 months as borders open

Sydneysiders touched down yesterday to a big bula welcome almost two years in the making!

Share

CommentComments

Events

Tourism

I Love New York launches new training course for travel agents. Enter for your chance to win!

Calling all Aussie travel agents! Complete the training by the end of January 2022 and you could win a New York-style “za” for you and your team!

Share

CommentComments