TravelCube’s Irish sales team saw room nights booked through increase by 22% last year. The USA, UK, Portugal, Spain and Italy were the leading destinations for fully independent (FIT) Irish travellers in 2013, according to Peter Friedrich, Account Manager Ireland and Northern Ireland.
A 55% rise in bookings to Portugal saw it overtake Spain and Italy and push the domestic destination out of the top five and into sixth place. While the UK enjoyed 64% growth in bookings, the top 10 long-haul destinations enjoyed the most significant increases and the USA, UAE and Australia all enjoyed double digit growth. Other destinations proving more popular for Irish travellers in 2013 included the Czech Republic, Malaysia and Thailand.
“Such success means the trade still has faith in intermediaries, despite a sometimes uncertain economic climate and the high profile collapse of some brands,” Peter told Irish Travel Trade News. “Such uncertainty, amid the fast-changing world of travel, can make it difficult for agents to know what is best for their business. It makes minimising risk increasingly important.
“Behind some of the biggest and best in the industry, our parent GTA has been powering global travel for nearly 40 years, selling tens of thousands of accommodation, transfers, tours and activities from practically every destination in the world. Today TravelCube is part of the €4.6 billion Kuoni Travel Group, which was established more than a century ago – we process thousands of bookings every day and sell millions of room nights in more than 25 languages online and throughout the world.
“With us, travel agents and tour operators enjoy reliability and security from a company that puts customer service, strong relationships and the growth of their business at its heart. Agents know they can rely on our global influence, our thorough understanding of destinations, as well as the local expertise and support we give their business. We help travel businesses find their way through an enormous amount of choice and find the right options to meet their customers’ demands. Our worldwide reach and decades of travel expertise mean we can act quickly to secure allocations throughout the year, to negotiate attractive – and free – cancellation terms, as well as special offers, promotions and competitive rates.
“For many in the industry, confidence in the intermediary, ‘bedbank’ model remains high as a result.”