A Worldchoice travel agency has sold nearly £250,000 worth of business through booking system Triton Search this year after turning its back on the bucket-and-spade market.

Two years ago Double S Travel in Luton was a teop-performing independent agent for Thomson Holidays, selling £250,000 of business for the operator a year. After Thomson cut base commission payments to 7% in January 2006, the agency stopped supporting the operator.

Partner Steve Pattenden, who has further boosted the agency’s profile and bookings with a weekly travel slot on BBC Three Counties Radio since Easter, said:

“We were one of Thomson’s preferred agents. Overnight they decided they didn’t want us.”

The agency decided instead to concentrate on tailor-made and long-haul business – so far this year one-fifth of its leisure sales on average have come through sales of Triton products. It now sells around one Thomson holiday a month.

He said the change in the agency’s business had followed a radical shake-up in Triton Search’s product range in the last 12 months. “We can package up short breaks to any destination in seconds. We now have the ability to compete with the bucket-and-spade market,” added Pattenden.

The news backs up claims by Worldchoice and Advantage head offices that sales through the super-consortium’s internal dynamic packaging and package booking system Triton Search are up on last year.

Worldchoice chairman Colin Heal said: “Members are using Triton Search extensively – levels of commission are far better than what the big boys offer.”

Double S Travel has sold its RailChoice division to International Rail for an undisclosed sum. Two staff have been transferred across as part of the sale.