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Unit 9 Retail Travel Operations
Transcript of Unit 9 Retail Travel Operations
Learning outcome 1: The Retail Travel Environment
Aims and Objectives
ABTA - the Travel Association defines a retail travel business as follows:
'Retail business is a business transacted in the capacity of a travel agent, i.e. a person carrying on business, in whole or in part, as agent for a principal remunerated by commission or otherwise, in respect of the sale of offer for sale of travel arrangements. Retail businesses are not in contract with the client.'
Products and Services
Links with other organisations
Assignment One - P1, M1
You are working for Estuary Travel agency who are producing an article about the retail travel environment. You have been asked to write an illustrated magazine article to be included in the travel agencies internal magazine; Estuary Life.
Your illustrated magazine article should be titled The Retail Travel environment.
You should identify and describe the following:
• The role of the different types of retail agents. You should provide named examples of each type of agent to support your descriptions.
• The products and services offered by retail agents.
• The links that exists within the retail travel environment and provide a named example.
• The different types of relationships that exist with retail agents, including integration and other types, such as agency agreements and different commission levels.
• You should provide real examples to support your descriptions.
One of the examples could be: Althams Travel agent, a regional independent agents has agency agreements in place with a number of tour operators and has negotiated higher commission levels with some of them. The agency agreement states the conditions of the agreement, the process to be used for bookings and for payments and the commission levels.
• Explain the importance of links and relationships within the retail travel environment.
• Consider why these links exist and why relationships are formed, explaining how they affect the organisations concerned.
Assignment One - P1, M1
retail travel Industry
Component sector within the industry
Retail travel has faced many operational changes over recent years and needs to constantly evolve in order to continue to meet the needs of consumers
How the retail travel organisation operates, remains competitive and meets the needs of customers
Wealth of skills and knowledge needed to be successful
Environment that RT operates in, links with other organisations, products and services they provide
what is retail travel?
role of a retail travel agent
Types of retail agencies
A retail travel agent acts as an intermediary (middleman) between the customer and the
The retail agent does not buy the products and services of the supplier or sell them on; rather, retail agents work on a
The commission is variable between suppliers. Charges for a retail agent's services are becoming more common and acceptable to customers.
- Gillian Dale 2010
Retail agencies specialise in leisure travel - most holidays.. however - some do cater for business customers. There are different types of retail travel agent :
Consortia for independent agents
Know the retail travel environment
Identify and describe Retail agencies: role
; independents; multiples; e-agents; homeworkers; call centres; holiday hypermarkets; miniples; consortia e.g. Advantage Travel Centres, Worldchoice
Explore Products and services
: traditional package holidays; tailor-made and dynamic holidays; ancillary sales; scheduled flights; charter flights; accommodation
with: accommodation providers; tour operators; transport providers; ancillary providers, e.g. insurance, car hire
integrated (vertical and horizontal); others e.g. agency agreements, preferred agents, commission levels
Chains of more than 100 branches - some are on almost every high street
Usually public limited companies - can afford prime locations
TUI, Thomas Cook - control over a quarter of high street retail travel agents between them.
An independent retail travel agency - often owned by a family or partnership
Found in smaller towns
Many have been bought out by multiple chains
Reputation for good personal service
Many major tour operators on-line - due to the growing trend of the internet
There are also companies that trade as on-line travel agencies without any retail shop presence
They sell packages, flights or accommodation.
Examples include Expedia, lastminute.com
Flexibility of working from home
Several companies operating in this market with a network of home workers
Examples include: Travel Counsellors and Future Travel (part of Co-operative Travel).
Some companies have dedicated call centres. Many of them are tour operators and flight agents.
However, some are operated by travel agents, such as STA
Very large retail agencies with staff who specialise in particular holiday types.
Tend to be located in large shopping centres where there is a lot of passing trade.
They have many promotions, but are expected to hut high sales targets.
These are chains, but tend to be smaller and less powerful than the multiples.
Located in one region where they may be well-known and have developed a good reputation.
Examples include: Premier Travel, Cooperative Travel.
Consortia for Independent agents
Note. It is not appropriate for call centres for the travel market to operate in developing countries, which are cheaper to run, as operators must have knowledge of the UK outbound market and destinations.
First Choice was the first company to introduce this type of retail travel agents and they have over 30 outlets, many situated in retail parks.
Consortia allow the travel agents to gain the benefits of being in a group, yet retain their independence.
Some consortia give the agents the option of using the consortium brand name - for recognition by the public.
Examples of consortia in the UK include: Freedom Travel, Advantage and Global.
Information on holidays and travel
Booking of traditional package holidays
Tailor-made and dynamic packages
Booking of travel for example scheduled and charter flights
Ancillary sales, for example parking or excursions, insurance
Scheduled and charter flights
Travel agents traditionally sell package holidays and historically this has provided the most revenue in commissions.
To boost that revenue, agents will try to add ancillary services including transport to the airport, insurance and excursions.
products and services continued..
There is a current trend for customers to use travel agents for advice and brochures, but book their holiday on-line at home
what can agents do to compete?
Agents have become much smarter at putting together tailor-made holidays - or dynamic packaging.
We may also see agents charging for advice and information.
What is dynamic packaging?
Industry jargon for tailor-making a package suited to the needs of a particular customer
Because they work on a commission basis, the relationships they have with other companies are very important.
These relationships may take the form of trading agreements or they may be part of the same trading group, for example Thomson travel agents belong to TUI UK.
the sectors that travel agents deal with are:
Hotels and other accommodation providers
Ancillary providers such as insurance companies
Car hire companies