BINGE-DRINKING agents have admitted they make mistakes on bookings and snap at customers after a night on the booze.

An exclusive Travel Weekly poll has also found staff fall behind with their work, argue with colleagues and suffer lapses of memory while nursing a hangover.

The results make sober reading in the run-up to Christmas and the new year sales period.Some 1,300 agents across the country took part in the online survey, throwing light on some worrying trends.

One in eight revealed they have made a mistake while taking a booking after a night’s drinking. Up to a quarter of travel agents said they fall behind with work because they are hungover, one in five suffer lapses of memory at work, one in 20 snap at customers and one in seven snap at colleagues.

Almost a quarter admitted they go boozing five or more times a week, with one in 10 drinking daily.

About 42% of men and 24% of women who took part admitted consuming more alcohol each week than the recommended maximum, compared with UK national figures of 27% of men and 15% of women.

The figures on consumption may be skewed by the relative youth of many counter staff, as the young are more prone to binge drinking. But our results are almost certainly an underestimate, since other studies suggest the average UK adult consumes seven units of alcohol a week more than they admit.

Cary Cooper, a professor of organisational psychology and health at Lancaster University, said: “It is a real worry if drink affects the relationship of staff with clients or colleagues. I would advise agents not to drink during the week.”