The Association of Touring and Adventure Suppliers has recruited eight experienced travel agents to form its Agent Advisory Group.

The panel will help the association to develop new services and products to ensure Atas offers practical and targeted support for agents.

Claire Brighton, account director for Atas, said: “The eight agents who have formed our new advisory panel are very keen ambassadors for the touring and adventure sector.

“They are enthusiastic supporters of touring and adventure holidays and have plenty of practical knowledge at work – and plenty of overseas experience from their own holidays and fam trips.

“It will be invaluable for Atas and our tour operator members to get their insights and feedback about the services and content we currently offer, as well as their advice on future plans for new initiatives.

“Our aim is always to support agents to sell touring and adventure so the opinions of the panel are essential.”

Brighton concluded: “We’re starting to see signs of recovery in the market as the vaccination programme gathers pace, so it’s a good time for agents look at the touring and adventure sector again.

“Our tour operator members are adding new tours for 2021 and 2022 as consumers are looking to make up for missed holidays.

“There is plenty of pent-up demand in the touring and adventure sector, so Atas is here to help agencies capitalise on those opportunities as we recover from the pandemic.”

The panel members are: Mandy Shillito, managing director, Miles Morgan Travel; Jade Semple, product and business development manager, Barrhead Travel; Georgina Why, commercial assistant, Hays Travel; Rob Kenton, managing director, Triangle Travel; Christina Astill, franchisee, GoCruise & Travel; Zoe Franklin, sales manager, Travel Club Elite; Victoria Jones, commercial partnerships manager, Advantage Travel Partnership; and Amy Wright, cruise and touring specialist and marketing manager, Select Travel Holidays.

What they say about touring and adventure holidays:

• Mandy: “I personally love escorted touring and adventure holidays as there is huge diversity, great value for money and allows customers to see so many amazing places in one trip.”

• Jade: “A guided trip to Machu Picchu ignited my interest in touring holidays.”

• Georgina: “I love that the touring and adventure side of the industry has such a wide variety to help keep clients inspired.”

• Rob: “I love nothing more than a touring holiday. One of my favourites was Peru.”

• Christina: “I still take clients away, most recently to spot polar bears.”

• Zoe: “On tours, you see so much more of what a destination has to offer.”

• Victoria: “I absolutely love exploring and seeing the best a country has to offer.”

• Amy: “What I love about touring & adventure holidays is the ability to delve a lot deeper into a destination. I’ve discovered that it’s not just the included activities on the itinerary, but the off-the-cuff spontaneity that you can be treated to by a local tour leader who knows the area.”