Jet2holidays is aiming to seal deals with more agents in the southeast after launching package holidays to 21 destinations from Stansted.
Chief executive Steve Heapy admitted the northern-based airline and package holiday brand was “largely unknown” in London and the east of England and had a “huge job ahead”.
Stansted will be the company’s ninth UK base and its first in the south of England.
Heapy said package holidays were under-served at Stansted, which offered a big opportunity for the company.
In an exclusive interview with Travel Weekly, Heapy said: “We think there’s a big desire from people in the Stansted catchment area to be able to travel with an Atol-licensed company on a fully protected package from their local airport.
“We have a huge job ahead of us letting people know about our product, so you are going to hear a lot more from us.
“We have a proven track record of building strong, long-lasting relationships with agents, and that will continue.”
Head of trade Alan Cross said the company was in talks with agents of a “reasonable” size about establishing commercial relationships. He added that the operator was keen to work with interested agents of any size.
“If the potential is there, we will work with them,” added Cross.
“There are a lot of independent agents who are hugely valuable to us, and we will give the same support to a business with one agency as one with 20 branches.”
Agents will receive point-of-sale material, including door stickers and marketing leaflets.
The operator offered 20 fam trips this year with 10 to 15 agents on each. Jet2holidays has pledged to offer more educationals in 2017.
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