Viking Sea arrives in London

Viking Sea arrives in London

Thursday, 05 May 2016 17:06

Viking Sea...

Take in the Eurovision city of Stockholm this summer with Taber Holidays

Take in the Eurovision city of Stockholm…

Thursday, 05 May 2016 12:30

With Sweden’s capital, Stockholm, firmly under the Eurovision spotlight this month (May 14), now is a great time to plan a summer getaway to city says Scandinavia specialists, Taber Holidays.

Marlin Apartments teams up with SuperBreak

Marlin Apartments teams up with SuperBre…

Thursday, 05 May 2016 08:30

Marlin Apartments has partnered with SuperBreak to make all of its apartments in London bookable on the travel booking website.

New fares structure from bmi regional offers more flexibility

New fares structure from bmi regional of…

Wednesday, 04 May 2016 12:30

bmi regional is offering a greater level of flexibility and choice for travellers with its new ‘fare families’, offering a host of enhanced benefits and products across its network.

New agent booking platform from RCL Cruises

New agent booking platform from RCL Crui…

Wednesday, 04 May 2016 08:30

RCL Cruises Ltd – Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Club Cruises – are on the final countdown to switching over to a new more intuitive reservations system.

Battered Suitcase bespoke tours now bookable through agents

Battered Suitcase bespoke tours now book…

Tuesday, 03 May 2016 14:00

A series of bespoke tours operated by Battered Suitcase to UNESCO World Heritage Sites and historic, natural and cultural locations across all five continents are now bookable through travel agents.

Titan launches 2017 river cruise preview brochure

Titan launches 2017 river cruise preview…

Tuesday, 03 May 2016 08:38

Titan is exclusively chartering a river cruise vessel for the whole of 2017 for the first time.

AWTE announces new line-up of board directors

AWTE announces new line-up of board dire…

Monday, 02 May 2016 12:00

The Association of Women Travel Executives (AWTE) held its 2016 AGM in London last month, hosted by Hill Dickinson, and has announced the new line-up of board directors.

King Jason Protaras opens

King Jason Protaras opens

Monday, 02 May 2016 08:30

The King Jason Collection has opened its second hotel, The King Jason Protaras.

Votes for Travel Bulletin Star Awards now OPEN!

Votes for Travel Bulletin Star Awards no…

Friday, 29 April 2016 14:11

Agents - cast your votes! Voting for Travel Bulletin’s Star Awards 2016 is now officially open.

Wendy Wu Tours highlights Bhutan visit

Wendy Wu Tours highlights Bhutan visit

Friday, 29 April 2016 11:56

Wendy Wu Tours is promoting two trips where travellers can follow in the footsteps of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s royal tour to India and Bhutan.

Scenic reaches new South East Asia shores

Scenic reaches new South East Asia shore…

Friday, 29 April 2016 08:30

Scenic has issued its latest South East Asia brochure for intrepid explorers to begin planning their next luxurious adventure featuring a new itinerary.

The Champagne Tour Co. launches child-friendly excursions with 25% saving

The Champagne Tour Co. launches child-fr…

Thursday, 28 April 2016 14:00

With Brits drinking more champagne than any other nation, many parents would love to visit the champagne region themselves to learn more about their favourite tipple, but are reluctant to...

Thailand offers from Premier Holidays

Thailand offers from Premier Holidays

Thursday, 28 April 2016 10:57

Premier Holidays has unveiled a hand-picked selection of new special offers promoting holidays to Thailand as part of a new destination marketing campaign.

Cuba addition from TravelCube

Cuba addition from TravelCube

Wednesday, 27 April 2016 12:00

TravelCube has put on sale more than 130 hotels in Cuba, including historic Havana, making it easier and more efficient for agents to book trusted, quality accommodation.

RCI unveils multi-day adventures

RCI unveils multi-day adventures

Wednesday, 27 April 2016 08:30

Royal Caribbean International has launched a new Multi-Day Adventures programme, which offers holidaymakers immersive two-day overnight explorations that include more adventure and provide guests with the chance to go further,...

There’s no doubt about it, 2011 will be a tough year for businesses across the UK. With government cutbacks and talks of a double-dip recession, consumer confidence and spending looks set to remain low. 
However, despite the downturn, I believe that the year ahead presents some major opportunities for the travel and tourism sectors.


Firstly, as consumers cut back on their daily and weekly luxuries, the focus on the annual holiday will become even stronger. Rather than spreading their spending over a number of smaller treats, customers are far more likely to save their income for something more worthwhile such as a holiday or travel experience. In the current climate, people are working harder and faster than ever. This, along with a somewhat gloomy outlook for next year, will only accentuate the importance of taking some time away from daily routines, enjoying a change of scenery and having a milestone to look forward to. As such, the holiday will become an even more sacred experience; one to savour and invest in.

I see a real opportunity for luxury travel brands to step forward and speak out to their customers. Though the recession has had an impact on the majority of UK consumers, there’s still a large market of more affluent holidaymakers that are seeking a high-end, luxury experience. And, as a travel operator you need to demonstrate that you can cater for this market.

At Leger Holidays, we recently took one of our luxury Silver Service coaches on a tour around the UK in order to show holidaymakers exactly what luxury coaching had to offer. The tour was a fantastic success with consumers and we were delighted with the volume of interest and bookings we took from those who experienced the coaches first hand.

We were particularly interested to see that the majority of these bookings were made for higher value and longer duration holidays. More and more of our customers are now upgrading to Silver Service and eight out of ten customers will then re-book this product again in the future. For me, this backs up our predictions for 2011 and shows that holidaymakers are still willing to spend more for a quality product they can really look forward to and enjoy.

Adding value to your products is yet another way to stand out in the recession. Customers are far savvier in today’s market and they will seek, and expect to find, a product that gives them extra bang for their buck. By giving away a free drink at dinner or an extra night in a hotel, you will open yourself up to a new market of price-conscious customers. What’s more, by showing that you understand value for money, you’re sure to engage with any current or relapsed customers too.

Finally, and perhaps most importantly, in order to survive in this market it’s imperative to invest in a strong marketing strategy. Take the opportunity to shout about your products and show your customers, partners and agents exactly what you can offer. When experiencing more challenging climates, it’s extremely tempting to reduce your marketing activity to save money. However, I personally believe that this could have a disastrous effect on your bottom line. In order to keep sales and bookings coming through the door, you need to position yourself at the front of your customers’ minds with the relevant products and messages.

To summarise, I believe that the opportunities for the travel and tourism sector are still out there and, if anything, the public’s appetite for an escape or retreat is stronger than ever. Our industry has always been very resilient with a strong ability to adapt to consumer’s need. And, in my mind, there’s no reason why 2011 should be any different.

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