I can remember well what happened to the British car manufacturing industry some 40 years ago, so Thomson be warned. There is nothing new under the sun, and that goes double for the business world.

Like Thomson, British car manufacturers decided to reduce the number of dealerships and try to control all of their distribution, except for a few deals with major independent players.

So did the small independent garage owners decide to give up? Absolutely not. They owned their customers, not the car manufacturers. They diversified, and started to sell new products such as Japanese cars.

The British manufacturers had effectively shot themselves in the foot. They opened the door to severe competition which one may say would have happened anyway but they made it easy for foreign car manufacturers to gain a foothold many years before they otherwise would.

The battle over the next few years will be with accommodation, not with flying, and there are plenty waiting in the wings in Europe and elsewhere to supply agents with the accommodation they require.

Reducing commission will bite you on the bum. You have been warned.