Trade sales of Sandals and Beaches Resorts holidays have grown by 20% just a year since the creation of in-house tour operator, Unique Caribbean Holidays.

Almost a third of all agent bookings from April 2017 to date have been made online via a trade booking engine, with many agents booking the all-inclusive resorts for the first time.

The company aims to grow its UK trade business by adding further room capacity, sufficient air stock as well as creative marketing solutions and commercial propositions.

Premium customers and niche markets will be targeted by collaborating with further retail partners specialising in groups, weddings and other areas.

Unique Caribbean Holidays managing director Karl Thompson said: “Securing the overwhelming support of our travel agency and airline partners this year during such a tumultuous period for the business was a huge success.

“They trusted us to deliver and we did so despite the challenge of launching a brand new booking system alongside a new business.

“Our business from the UK overall has grown, with trade business exceeding our expectations, and we are delighted that all of our tour operator partners contributed to this. We would like to thank everybody who continues to support us.”

The operator has focused its efforts on improving its booking portal and making this more user friendly for agents by adding functionality such as a flight and price availability calendar to enable them to see rates on a monthly view.

Agents will soon be able to book twin and multi-centre holidays on the trade website following an increase in demand.

Thompson said: “Both of these initiatives have taken a year to develop but will make a huge difference to agents and their ability to convert enquiries, and with the twin centres, secure an increasing popular choice of holiday. We will continue to improve our trade website, giving agents a tool that will increase their productivity with ever improving efficiency.

“The ability to book available stock, whether it be air or hotel, is critical to our success. Unique Caribbean Holidays has invested a huge amount of time to enable the best access to inventory whether it be multi-generational bookings or bookings for tomorrow or in two years’ time.”

The operator will continue to investigate buying behaviour and will work with its partners to facilitate how agents and customers want to book their holidays in the future, Thompson added.

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