Winter and summer all-inclusive resort operator Club Med is seeking new “hidden gem” agents to sell its holidays in addition to the ski specialists.
The company is poised to sign a deal with the Advantage Travel Partnership and is in talks with The Travel Network Group.
Club Med began working with Travel Counsellors last year and has performed so well that it will be one of Travel Counsellors’ top 10 accounts this year.
Sales manager Yann Richard said: “We will continue to work with our ski specialists but we have to increase our business through other agents.”
The operator has a new sales team on the road to engage with more agents – Phil Shipman in the north, Danny Joel in the south and Sarah Revell in London and the West Midlands.
It is also planning to extend incentives for the top 20 agents (in its Infinite Group) to new partners.
Club Med’s winter 2016 programme went on sale this week and £400 can be won by the new agent partner that secures the most bookings by March 20.
The same initiative will run for the Infinite Group of 20 top partners, with £600 to the agent who makes the most bookings in the first three days of the winter programme going on sale.
Richard claimed Club Med holidays were the most lucrative of their type for agents to sell because, unlike competitors, Club Med includes everything in the total holiday price, so the agent receives the commission on it all.
Club Med has produced a crib sheet for the trade comparing how its ski holidays and prices stack up against competitors Mark Warner, Crystal and Neilson.Taking similar four‑star properties in La Plagne during April 2015, a Club Med holiday, based on two adults sharing, costs £1,266, including meals, drinks, full-day ski tuition and lift passes. Club Med claims
Mark Warner costs £1,645, Crystal £1,684 and Neilson £2,283, and none offer full-day tuition, full board or lift passes within the price.
Club Med plans a series of fam trips this year to reward top agents, including to Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic and Opio in the south of France. The French trip will include time on Club Med 2, cruising in the French Riviera.
Response from Andy Furlong, sales and marketing director at Neilson Active Holidays
We at Neilson were interested to read that Club Med had prepared a crib sheet to compare the cost of a Club Med winter ski holiday with those of its competitors.
This season has been exceptionally busy for Neilson and as such, the price that was used in the comparison was one of our last available rooms at one of our most expensive third party hotels – not what we feel is representative of the Neilson ski product as a whole.
In an age of fluid pricing, I question Club Med’s decision to print such a crib sheet to distribute to agents. As a case in point, the price they stated in their original crib sheet for a Club Med holiday was £1,266 at the time of printing four days ago, however this has now more than doubled to £2,829 – making them by far the most expensive on their own crib sheet.
In comparison when we look at next year’s pricing (as of 23 March) for the Neilson Hotel Turquoise in La Plagne, Neilson actually comes out cheaper on every date except the first and last departures of the season.
There is a reason that price comparisons such as these haven’t been used by Neilson for several years as we find them to be a largely futile exercise which can actually be quite misleading.
We are all for some friendly competition, however we would encourage agents to look beyond the crib sheet and take a closer look at all of the key operators deals and prices before making a decision on who they should be booking with.
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