A Carrott and wine diet can help develop flare for dancing

A Carrott and wine diet can help develop flare for dancing

the organisation and business issues first.

n How many hours do you work a week on average?

Probably about 50 to 60 hours per week, plus the social events.

n What percentage of holiday bookings do you estimate will be taken direct by the year 2000?

The percentage will not alter much in the next year. However, distribution channels such as the Internet and interactive TV will increase the proportion of direct sales over the next few years.

n How long do you expect it will be before a significant number of bookings are made by digital television?

I expect it will be noticeable within five years. However, interactive TV will also play a part in the growing market.

n Do you think the growing consolidation in the industry is good for consumers?

It will be bad for customers if it removes true competition and choice. It will only be good if it makes the industry more efficient and achieves better value for money and a better quality product for the customer.

n How many travel agents do you estimate there will be left in the UK in five years' time?

The good agents, who evolve with the changing market will survive and thrive, selling from high street shops, call centres and from 'virtual sites' distributed across the Internet and interactive TV.

n Do you agree with travel agents charging a fee for their work?

Clients will accept and pay the fees if they feel that the service provided adds value to the purchase - whatever the industry. In principle Iam in favour of charging but if agents are simply fulfilling a booking service then they will find that fees are not sustainable.

Industry talk

n What was your first job in travel and how much did you get paid?

In 1970 selling UScharter seats at college at about £5 per seat - good money in those days.

n Who has been the biggest influence on your career and why?

Richard Gapper, managing directorat Pickfords Travel. He had great vision and always looked beyond the obvious.

n If you weren't in travel, what would you be doing?

Broadcasting on TV or radio in sport, entertainment or travel.

n What advice would you give to someone starting out in the travel industry?

Ignore the glitz. Understand the organisation and business issues first.

n How many hours do you work a week on average?

Probably about 50 to 60 hours per week, plus the social events.

n What percentage of holiday bookings do you estimate will be taken direct by the year 2000?

The percentage will not alter much in the next year. However, distribution channels such as the Internet and interactive TV will increase the proportion of direct sales over the next few years.

n How long do you expect it will be before a significant number of bookings are made by digital television?

I expect it will be noticeable within five years. However, interactive TV will also play a part in the growing market.

n Do you think the growing consolidation in the industry is good for consumers?

It will be bad for customers if it removes true competition and choice. It will only be good if it makes the industry more efficient and achieves better value for money and a better quality product for the customer.

n How many travel agents do you estimate there will be left in the UK in five years' time?

The good agents, who evolve with the changing market will survive and thrive, selling from high street shops, call centres and from 'virtual sites' distributed across the Internet and interactive TV.

n Do you agree with travel agents charging a fee for their work?

Clients will accept and pay the fees if they feel that the service provided adds value to the purchase - whatever the industry. In principle Iam in favour of charging but if agents are simply fulfilling a booking service then they will find that fees are not sustainable.

Personal talk

n What is your star sign?

Aries.

n What would you change about yourself?

My low boredom threshold.

n Which living person do you most respect?

My wife - she stood by me through the drought!

n What is your greatest regret?

Missing the children's sports days and school plays.

n What is your greatest extravagance?

Wine.

n If you could be anyone for a day who would it be and why?

Jasper Carrott - I would love to see the world with his sense of the ridiculous.

n When was the last time you did some exercise?

The last time I got into my disco dancing trousers.

n Which sports do you love and which do you hate?

I love footie and Ihate synchronised swimming.

n What is the most memorable destination you've visited and why?

Penang (in the 1980s). Great beaches, food, hotels and good service.

n What type of holiday would you avoid at all costs?

I would absolutely avoid a coach tour of 'historic'anywhere.

n What would you have put on your gravestone?

It is forbidden to throw stones at this notice.

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