TUI Travel is to review the way overseas holiday reps work in resort for next summer.
Holiday rep services across TUI Travel’s main Thomson and First Choice businesses will be integrated for the first time next summer but will still operate in resort under two separate brands.
A trial in Cyprus this summer has looked into the different ways reps work in resort and will be used as a basis for the review.
Distribution director Nick Longman denied it would mean a reduction in rep services in resort. In recent years Thomson and other operators have ditched welcome meetings and cut services because of falling attendance figures and more independently-booked holidays.
But the recent collapse of the XL Leisure Group and recent signs of revived interest in ATOL-protected package holidays could in fact to lead to more rep services, according to Longman.
“If anything this is a time when you need more services. It’s not about reducing reps. I would like to see if there is value in the welcome meeting; it’s about being there for customers when they want it,” he said.
Customer director Tim Williamson added that TUI had been in talks with companies in other sectors to look at their customer service offerings where they look after large numbers of consumers.
“It’s about changing the way reps work. We have been talking to other service providers in other industries about how to do it for scale,” he said.
Longman added that trusted brands and ATOL protected holidays were likely to see increased sales as a result of the failure of XL and the impact on consumer confidence.
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