TUI Travel UK and Ireland has confirmed it will create 500 extra apprenticeships in 2010.

The travel giant reaffirmed its plans to up its training places from 1,000 to 1,500, most of which will be in retail and overseas positions.

TUI Travel UK and Ireland human resources director Jacky Simmonds said: “The business community needs to act quickly to harness young talent, and use it to best effect, rather than allow young people to stay out of work for long periods of time.

“TUI UK is committed to coaching its staff, many of whom are between 18 and 24, through training and investment and the apprenticeship programme is testament to this.

“The apprenticeship programme provides areas of the business with enthusiastic and loyal staff. For example, in the retail division, apprentices frequently feature in our Top Sellers list, progress quickly to assistant retail managers and retail managers, and stay an average of two years longer then regular agents,” Simmonds said.

The company was one of the first to sign up to the government’s Backing Young Britain campaign in September. It has trained more than 3,500 apprentices in the past five years. The announcement comes following Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s promise to “encourage a new generation of young Britons to embrace ambition and British enterprise” made during his speech at the Labour Party Conference yesterday (September 29).

For more information on TUI UK’s apprenticeship programme go to