Agents shouldn’t be embarrassed to tackle customers’ questions around the cost of touring and adventure holidays head-on, according to the founder of Wendy Wu Tours.
Speaking during an industry leaders’ panel, Wendy Wu said: “Cost is my favourite subject, I love talking about cost. A customer may think a £2,500-a-head holiday is a great expense, but that gives you the opportunity to explain to them how inclusive that price is.
“When they understand that price includes return airfare, accommodation, tours, taxes and an expert guide who can take them to places they wouldn’t normally find, they then see the value.”
She added: “The best thing about it for travel agents is that the whole tour is commissionable, from flights to extras.”
Jane Atkins, managing director of Shearings Holidays, urged agents to break costs down to a “price per day” to demonstrate value to clients.
She added: “Tours may not be cheap but when compared to booking the elements independently, they offer great value.
“Once you have got a touring client, they tend to become addicted. We have a repeat rate of over 70%, and if they are booking three, four or even five tours a year and also thinking about preand post-tours, then that is great earning potential for agents.”
Aaron Hocking, managing director of Intrepid Travel, said the operator was seeing growth in sales through agents, and its clients’ considerations when booking a holiday were evolving.
“We are seeing growth in the younger market, which we’re targeting with an 18-29-focused brand,” he said. “These customers are looking to travel in a responsible and sustainable way and we find they are sharing their experiences on social media during their tours and on their return.”
He added: “We also have a repeat rate in the 60s (%) and that’s because customers recognise the value they are getting and the experiences they would otherwise miss out on.”
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