With Travel Agent Appreciation Week (and month) now in full swing, a host of suppliers and trade partners have stepped up to thank agents for the important work they do. Here is a sampling of just some of the messages, programs, events, and – most importantly – incentive offers communicated on Travel Agent Appreciation Day yesterday (May 3).
“Ontario travel agents’ passion and dedication for providing exceptional service and consumer protection to clients is truly commendable,” says the Travel Industry Council of Ontario. “Whether you’re helping someone plan their dream vacation or navigating the complexities of post-pandemic travel, TICO thanks you for all that you do.”
“It has been a challenging three years for the travel industry, but Ontario’s travel agents have proven their expertise, professionalism and commitment to their clients day after day,” says TICO’s CEO Richard Smart. “Travel agents are an integral part of Ontario’s travel consumer protection framework and play a vital role in ensuring consumers have added peace of mind as they purchase travel.”
TTC TOUR BRANDS
The TTC Tour Brands team convened in Toronto last night (May 3) to celebrate Canadian travel advisors and to thank them for their ongoing partnership across their “full house” of brands, including Luxury Gold, Insight Vacations, Trafalgar, Brendan Vacations, Costsaver and Contiki. Advisors were invited to enjoy a casino-themed evening of cocktails, canapes, and casino games alongside executive team members and the Canadian sales team. Melissa DaSilva – President, TTC Tour Brands, North America, who flew in from California for the event, told the dozens of agents in attendance that there was “no big announcement,” simply appreciation and a big “thank you” for TTC’s Canadian partners, especially over the past tumultuous year.
To honour travel advisors this month, the Jamaica Tourist Board, in partnership with ACTA, is offering a Business-building Workshop series May 9, 10, and 11 with three-night stay (for two) giveaways from Royalton Negril Resort, DeCameron Club Caribbean, and Secrets St. James Resort. The three hour-long virtual professional development sessions will be hosted by travel industry expert and TV host Sandra McLemore and include (all times 2-3 p.m. EDT):
- May 9 – Planning Fees for Travel Advisors: Everything you need to know
- May 10 – Removing the noise and overwhelm to make space for new leads
- May 11 – Generating new leads for your business
Workshops will be administered in English and are free to attend. Register at visitjamaica.com/canada/engage.
“Travel agents are undeniably important in our business, and we would like to take the opportunity to acknowledge and express our gratitude to all our partners across the country. Their continued engagement and passion for the Emerald Isle is evident as business is back – thanks largely in part to our travel trade urging travellers to ‘Fill their Heart with Ireland’ and book their trip in 2023,” says Tourism Ireland Canadian manager Sandra Moffatt. “We are here to offer the support and resources advisors need to sell the island.” That includes the following upcoming educational webinars (all at noon, EST):
- May 10 – ‘Attractions Across the Island of Ireland’
- June 7 – ‘Flavours of Ireland’
- June 28 – ‘Explore Northern Ireland’
There is also an agent specialist program, content pool with free images to use, agent Facebook group, and monthly e-zine.
And now – the incentives!
Air Canada Vacations’ month-long “You Mean the World To Us” event offers travel counsellors booking any package by May 31 (for travel through Dec. 31) a chance to win a trip for two to anywhere Air Canada flies. The prize includes roundtrip economy tickets for one agent plus a companion and includes a $2,000 accommodation voucher to anywhere that Air Canada Vacations serves. The winners will be announced on June 15, 2023. The more you book, the more you can win.
Additionally, the travel agent appreciation celebration provides a 20% discount for agents to use for their personal travel. The agent discount will be applicable to packages to Mexico, the Caribbean and Europe throughout the month of May with a travel window through Dec. 18.
As part of its efforts to celebrate travel advisors, the Globus family of brands launched a special booking incentive to compliment its existing offers for agents: a $150 gift card for every Globus or Avalon Waterways booking made between mid-April and May 17.
In addition to this limited-time incentive for new bookings, travel advisors can earn more through GFOB’s Travel Advisor Discount Program. And, for those advisors who become an Avalon Waterways specialist, the company offers access to Suite Rewards – a program that provides them the opportunity to earn a complimentary FAM.
AFRICAN TRAVEL INC.
Travel advisors will earn a booking incentive for each new custom safari (excluding specials, Classic Safari Vacation Packages, and groups) booked with TravCorp brand African Travel Inc. (ATI), from May 1 to Dec. 15. Plus, advisors will receive up to 15% commission on land safaris and savings of up to 30% for themselves and a travel companion. When they have five plus bookings, advisors can travel with three guests. The tour operator encourages advisors to sign up for its specialist program for access to marketing and event support, educational trips, new client amenities, the Agent Academy, and the new ATI summer webinar series. To receive the travel discount advisors must be registered for the program and complete the Academy courses before travel. (www.africantravelinc.com/advisor)
To celebrate Travel Advisor Appreciation Month, Collette is offering each advisor who secures at least two bookings from May 1 to June 30 a $50 incentive. Plus, the three advisors who secure the most bookings in the month of May will earn even more. The top booking advisor will win a free Spotlight tour of their choosing. Second and third place will win $2,000 and $1,000 travel vouchers respectively. The winners will be announced on May 31. Meanwhile, the tour operator notes that agents receive a 50% discount on tours, with companions receiving 25% year-round for personal travel.
ROYAL IRISH TOURS
In celebration of Travel Agent Appreciation Month, Royal Irish Tours (RIT) has revealed an incentive for travel counsellors in May: every booking in May will be added to a draw to win a grand prize of an eight-day familiarization trip to Ireland or Scotland in 2023/24. Multiple bookings mean multiple entries in the draw.
KARISMA HOTELS & RESORTS
Karisma Hotels & Resorts is celebrating travel agents all month long with the introduction of a travel agent advisory board, weekly scavenger hunts with prizes, and incentives for new bookings. Virtual scavenger hunts will occur each week, and participating agents can win a $250 gift card. A questionnaire will be distributed weekly via email, closing each Friday at midnight. Those who complete all four scavenger hunts will also be entered to win a $1000 gift card grand prize.
As an added incentive, new bookings made for Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts and the Margaritaville brand before July 31 for travel between May 15-Dec. 15 will receive Double Gourmet Inclusive points when registered by the agent in their account via Karisma’s travel agent portal.
Silversea Cruises has introduced a new incentive for Travel Partner Appreciation Month: When travel advisors make a new confirmed booking on any expedition cruise during the months of May and June, they will automatically be entered into a weekly prize draw for a chance to win a gift card. One winner will be selected for each week in May and June. In addition, the cruise line notes its introduction of kicker commissions in early 2023, whereby Silversea is offering agents an extra 1% kicker commission on all expedition cruises, an extra 1% on all new-to-brand guests, and an extra 1% an all new-to-repeat guests (guests who book for a second time with Silversea through the same agency).
First published at Travel Industry Today