Cruise118 parent joins The Travel Network Group

Cruise118 parent joins The Travel Network Group

The Travel Network Group (TTNG) is set to bolster its cruise offering after a deal was struck with travel agency World Travel Holdings UK.

The agency, which operates Cruise118, Six Star Cruises and River Voyages, has left Hays Travel and will officially join The Travel Network Group on May 6.

The deal means that World Travel Holdings UK can create dynamic cruise packages, which will continue to be sold direct, but also through TTNG’s extensive membership of homeworkers, independent agencies and Worldchoice shops.

James Cole (pictured), co-founder and managing director of World Travel Holdings UK said the move opened up B2B opportunities which would help “grow the business tremendously”.

He said TTNG offered an Atol which allowed him to reach his internal goals but it was the distribution opportunities which sealed the deal.

“We will be able to distribute experiential packages through TTNG’s 800 members, which includes 260 Worldchoice shops,” he said. “We’ll be creating more brochures to show the kind of packages we will be offering.

“We will get net rate on the sailings, package them up, control our margins and pay the TTNG members a commission. Up until now we’ve always had a B2C model but this allows up to work business-to-business.

“We have had a great time with Hays Travel and working with their team and John Hays. John is a legend in the travel industry and has become a good friend of mine.

“But I’m extremely excited about the opportunities provided through TTNG. Gary Lewis and his team will be a great partner. I was very impressed with how far TTNG has come in recent years under Gary’s leadership.”

Gary Lewis, group managing director of TTNG, said the new proposition would enable members of the group to differentiate themselves in the cruise sector.

Lewis said: “We are now able to differentiate ourselves in the cruise world. This is a cruise member that does £50 million in revenue, £25 million of that will come directly under our control through The Cruise Club.

“This allows us to drive cruise and specialise in cruise and as a result we will be able to offer our entire membership something very unique using the skillset of World Travel Holdings. We’ll also look to grow our Cruise Club membership massively from 80 to 160 within the next 12 months.

“World Travel Holdings differentiates though its own dynamic packaging product. We want to have that DP product pumped through the rest of our membership proposition.”

Lewis said the offering would also benefit existing members in selling cruise, adding that he sees the move as key to membership retention.

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