A total of 168 agents and homeworkers attended Tipto roadshows in July, as the trade marketing organisation resumed its live events programme.
The ‘Face 2 Face with Tipto’ roadshows were held in Nottingham, Norwich, York and Newcastle, showcasing supplier members’ products to local travel agents.
The usual format has been slightly changed to allow for social distancing and limits on numbers.
There were presentations from up to 10 suppliers at each event, which included a two-course dinner and drinks.
The roadshows offer the first opportunity in 16 months for many suppliers to meet agents in person.
Some business development managers were back at work specifically for the events, after being on furlough.
Prizes given to agents at the events included 12 places on the Biblio Travel mega-fam and a hotel stay at the Hotel Jardin Tecina in Tenerife courtesy of Fred Holidays.
Biblio Travel and Fred Holidays will officially join the organisation in September.
Other prizes included a Menorca fam trip place with Palladium Hotel Group; Farebank credit from Gold Medal; shopping vouchers from Scenic and Emerald Cruises and Titan plus chocolate hampers, fizz and more from other suppliers.
Tipto chairman Nick Hughes said: “So great to see trade teams back out on the road attending the four Tipto events over the UK these past few weeks, and the feedback has been fantastic.
“The energy and positivity gained from face-to-face events after such a long hiatus is evident in so many ways – not least in the fact that suppliers secured so many bookings, directly from the events.”
Tipto will hold another event in August before its new trading year begins in September.
This will be a champagne afternoon tea in Manchester to reward agents for their hard work and support over the past 16 months.
An appeal will be launched on National Travel Agent Day (July 23) for agents to nominate any colleagues, team members or other agents.
The group will have 12 members with the start of its new trading year in September and it hopes this number will rise because it is in talks with other suppliers.
It aims to run 20 Face 2 Face roadshows from September.
“Thank you so much for the event last night – I really enjoyed our first agent evening in a very long time. I loved the format of the evening. Great to catch up with the operators and hoteliers. I have just secured a £13k booking this morning with Gold Medal for a Palladium hotel!” Lorna Neale, Fred Olsen Travel in Norwich
“I just wanted to let the team that put together the Tipto night in Nottingham know that I just did my first booking with Newmarket Holidays to South Africa because of what I learnt from the supplier on the night. I am a first-year apprentice so I’m very happy.” Kacey Richardson, Hays Travel, Chaddesden
“Thank you for a lovely evening at Norwich, it was a great night to see suppliers again. Just to let you know I have done a Gold Medal booking on Saturday for Florida for October 2022 at a £6.5k value!” Becky Margarson, Broadland Travel, Norwich
“It was so lovely to finally re-group with other travel industry members and it was a lovely atmosphere and really informative. We have done a booking off the back of the Newmarket Travel presentation. They included an offer for South Africa, which we have since advertised on our Facebook page and my colleague Kimm booked it for some of our clients!” Vicky Samwell, Oyster Travel in Norwich
“What a brilliant night we had. Felt so good to see everyone. Loved that all people representing the tour operators were more excited to talk about their products than ever before. It’s like they were on day release (in a good way)”.
(On Tipto Facebook page)