Travel agents should take care not to lose clients in a bid to meet tightened budgets.
Speaking to 150 travel agents at the Loving Andalucia British Tourist Trade Forum in Malaga, Villair Travel partner Mike Richardson said agents are constantly trying to cut costs to meet reduced budgets in the current economic climate.
However, he expressed concerns that cutting too many costs may lead to bad holidays and dissatisfied customers. He said: “We’ve got to be optimistic and ensure that the client doesn’t downgrade their holiday so much that they don’t enjoy it.
“I would try and direct customers down a route that would give them a better experience.”
Monarch Group overseas director and head of purchasing Hugh Morgan agreed that a number of properties are purely trying to compete on price, which could lead to further problems. He added: “I see offers [from hotels] of £8 per night, what can a hotel offer for that? The customer turns up at the hotel and it isn’t so good.”
Association of Independent Tour Operators chairman Derek Moore said agents should instead try to meet budgets while focusing on quality.
He said: “People can still come here with the cheaper product for 14 nights or they can come for a shorter period of time and still enjoy the product for fewer nights.”
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