Comment: Business is as right as rain

Comment: Business is as right as rain

Watching the rain tumbling down as I headed to the airport last weekend, I felt glad I was on my way to the Alps for a family holiday, rather than dodging the downpours on days out closer to home.

It also led me to think there would be a few outbound operators quietly rubbing their hands together as the atrocious weather created a literal drip-drip effect for customers weighing up whether to commit to an escape to guaranteed sunshine this summer.

The early signs this week were that travel agents were pleased with their weekend’s work, and chatting to friends and family even before the latest deluge, it’s clear that the pretty ropey start to the year weather-wise had encouraged many people to consider an overseas break – some for the first time in years.

Good agents will undoubtedly be capitalising on the opportunity to secure some good-value bookings before the lates begins, and it will be this spirit of identifying and capitalising on opportunities that I’ll be exploring further in Vietnam next week.

As moderator of Clia’s river cruise conference since its launch in 2016, I’ve been a close observer of the growth of this once-niche sector.

But I’ll admit that even I would have raised an eyebrow if you’d told me at that first conference that interest and demand would lead to a standalone Asia-focused event just two years later.

I can’t wait to once again be inspired by the way in which an entire sector is forging new paths – with travel agents at the very heart of its strategy.

Comment from Travel Weekly, 5 April edition

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