There’s plenty to look forward to this year, says Globus family brands, and the numbers prove it. Strong summer and fall bookings indicate that all that pent-up demand for travel is finally coming to fruition. But how will the war in Ukraine and ongoing health and safety measures factor in? We catch up with Stéphanie Bishop, managing director for the Globus family of brands to discuss what to expect in the months ahead.
- Are you seeing an upward trend leading into the all-important summer season in Europe?
Our bookings reflect Canadians’ desire to travel again and have an incredible trip to look forward to. We’ve had a very strong Q1 with sales for summer and fall 2022 as well as 2023 vacations. And, Europe is leading the way. Our depth and breadth of Europe offerings has been a big bonus for advisors and their clients who are looking for diverse experiences, from dynamic river cruises on all of Europe’s major waterways to Choice Touring and Undiscovered tours in throughout Western and Southern Europe.
- How has the war in Ukraine impacted your tours? And what do you want travel agents to know in terms of any possible cancellations?
First, we proactively cancelled all Russia tours through 2023. We have also seen a slight slowdown in bookings in the last few weeks (less than 10 percent), specifically for Eastern European vacations. Conversely, we’ve enjoyed an increase in sales for North America and other Western and Southern European destinations – for both tours and river cruises. This minimal slowdown is offset by Canadians booking longer, more expensive trips. They’ve missed travelling and are spending more time – and money – on their comeback journeys. And, both advisors and our consumers have shared with us their confidence and comfort in travelling with the Globus family of brands, knowing that they’re in good, safe hands, not to mention the fact that they’re in for a perfectly planned getaway.
As is always the case when advisors and their clients book trips with the Globus family of brands, the safety and security of our guests is our top priority. They can be assured that we will always do right by our travellers. If the integrity of any vacation could be compromised, affecting our guests’ enjoyment of their journey, close to home or abroad, we proactively cancel. Otherwise, we provide our guests with options and always have a plan “see” up our sleeves to help our guests find joy in their journeys with us.
- Travel restrictions are easing around the world, including Canada. What can you tell us about Globus’ current safety protocols, and will they be changing as global restrictions continue to lift?
We have a COVID vaccination mandate in place for all guests through the end of the year. Beyond that, we continue to follow the local requirements and recommendations in the destinations we visit. We also introduced a ‘Yes! You’re Covered’ program to set travellers’ minds at ease.
‘Yes! You’re Covered’ means:
- On-trip tests are a breeze. Not only do we schedule and arrange all necessary on-trip COVID-19 tests, the Globus family of brands also pays for return-home tests.
- Everyone’s vaccinated. We have extended our vaccination policy to ensure our staff, crew and guests are all vaccinated against COVID-19, worldwide, through 2022.
- Our health and safety protocols work. In 2021, our guests weathered the COVID-19 pandemic in the comfort of travel bubbles – on land, on rivers and at sea – across the globe. As a result, our health and safety record is unmatched.
- Our travel protection checks out. The Globus family of brands’ travel protection covers COVID-related on-trip expenses, including a ‘cancel for any reason’ benefit.
- We stand by our guests. If things don’t go as planned on-trip, our guests are never left to face a cloud of uncertainty alone. Instead, they’re always in the care of our operations team while in destination.
- We have a plan “See.” The Globus family of brands enjoys a long history of doing what’s right for travellers – ensuring that their vacation is not compromised. On those rare occasions when closures or barriers roll-in and threaten vacations, we provide a Plan “See” to ensure our guests have options to continue to enjoy their journey.
- Unparalleled peace of mind. In addition to countless on-trip assurances, our Peace of Mind Plan invites travellers to sunset their original vacation plans and move their trip without penalty.
- What are 3 of your best-selling tours for spring / summer 2022?
The Globus family of brands’ travel portfolio is so diverse – with a plethora of options – that it’s hard to showcase best-selling tours. Instead, I can share our best-selling destinations for both Globus and Cosmos are Italy, the United Kingdom and Ireland. And, for cruising, it’s worth noting that the Romantic Rhine – an itinerary that’s perfect for first-time river cruisers – remains on top. Our Active & Discovery cruises are our top-selling style of itinerary.
- What are you most looking forward to this year?
Giving advisors the travel solutions and support they need to help their clients enjoy their journeys back to travel. And, of course fulfilling dreams and wanderlust across the globe. We are offering travellers our most diverse travel portfolio, ever, and look forward to helping them rediscover the world in all new, all “you” ways on land and on rivers.
For more information go to www.agentlingo.ca.