Poll results from Travelweek’s COVID-19 Travel Agent Survey show that while many front-line agents are working overtime to keep up with all the C&Cs - counselling and cancellations - they’re also ...
TORONTO — Each new year poses the same challenge to the Globus family of brands: How do you allow people to dream about travel yet at the same time make it their own personal experience?
The answer: offer freedom, unique experiences and affordability, the company’s three main pillars that drive all of its decisions across each of its brands – Globus, Cosmos, Monograms and Avalon.
Next year, following yesterday’s launch of Globus’ and Cosmos’ Europe 2020 brochures, the three pillars have resulted in 61 new product offerings, which makes it an exciting time for the company, says Stéphanie Bishop, Managing Director for Canada at a trade media breakfast this morning.
“Our product line is getting more extensive each year because our travellers are evolving each year. Having great product is a given, but how you bring that product to light to meet the changing needs of travellers is what it’s all about,” she adds.
This morning’s breakfast also served as an opportunity to meet Chris Jones, the company’s new Director of Marketing, who joined Globus family of brands three months ago following Patrice Geske’s retirement. With 15 years of experience working with ad agencies, Jones says Globus family of brands has been a “natural fit” fit for him.
“Globus is a multi-brand company and has given me tremendous support, I’m very happy to be here,” he says.
With four brands and a breadth of destinations on offer, Bishop says the company’s biggest advantage – and biggest challenge – is the fact that it sells the world. This is why it has focused primarily on offering flexibility, knowing that each traveller’s style and preferences are different.
“We’ve got baby boomers who are rediscovering touring with all its diversity, and first-timers to Europe on our multi-country Panorama Tours, our most popular tours under the Globus and Cosmos brands,” she adds. “Plus, there’s a younger audience coming to play, the average age of our travellers is reducing. But the common thread between them all is the fact that they want choice, flexibility and experiences.”
In 2020, Globus’ and Cosmos’ popular ‘Undiscovered Series’ will head to the Mediterranean for the first time, including Italy, Croatia and Slovenia, for a total of 11 itineraries. Now in its third season, the series is already running in Italy and Britain, each of which will see two new itineraries next year.
Also notable for 2020 is CosmosLite, a whole new category of touring for the brand that launched last year. Combining all the comforts of a Cosmos tour with the freedom of independent travel, each package includes city-to-city transportation, hotel accommodation and daily breakfast. What it doesn’t include, however, is a set itinerary, leaving travellers the freedom to pick and choose their daily activities.
On the river side, Avalon’s chartered cruises hosted by Canadian singers and musicians have grown so much in popularity that they now have a loyal following. Cruises hosted by Canadian icon Jann Arden sell out in days, while other homegrown talents like Johnny Reid, Sam Roberts and Jim Cuddy have also come aboard.
And while Avalon’s 2020 season was already launched earlier this year, Bishop says that the 2021 season will have an early release next year, the brand’s earliest launch ever.
With so much on the table, Bishop adds that the company relies heavily on its travel agent partners to get the word out to their clients. She reminds agents to go to agentlingo.ca and visit the portal The Source for relevant information and marketing materials. Plus, a new agent page has just been launched on Facebook where agents can chat with each other and swap stories and tips.
Calling agents an “integral part of our success”, and crediting them for performing several jobs in one (“they have to be doctors, psychologists, accountants and more”), Bishop says that it’s the company’s job to make their job easier.
“We live and breathe with our relationships with our agent partners, they’re the backbone of our business,” she says. “Not only do we have nine BDMs across Canada, we also have a huge Inside Sales department. We want agents to call our call centres, we want to pick up the phone and talk to them. We want to see our agents succeed.”
Here’s a brief overview of what’s new for Globus family of brands in 2020:
Europe: ‘Scottish Highland Fling’; ‘Irish Manors & Castles’; ‘Southern Italy & Greece’; ‘Eclectic Aegean with 7-nigh Cruise’ (with Celestyal); ‘Greek Island Adventure’
North America: ‘Jasper Dark Sky Canadian Rockies Adventure’; ‘Cape Cod & The Islands/400th Mayflower Anniversary’; ‘Eastern Canada Winter Adventure’; ‘Quebec in Depth with Winter Adventure’
South Pacific: ‘’Wild Tasmania’; ‘Great Sights of Australia’; ‘Best Kept Secret: Western Australia’; ‘Australian Safari’; ‘South Pacific by Land & Sea’ (includes 14-night Holland America cruise)
Globus Escapes (November-March off-season): ‘’Four Capitals of Europe Escape’; ‘Paris to Rome Escape’; ‘Dutch Escape’; ‘Norwegian Fjords Escape’; ‘Scottish Highlands Escape’; ‘Lisbon to Madrid Escape’; ‘Southern Spain Escape’; ‘Northern Italy Escape’; ‘Polish Escape’
Asia: ‘Highlights of Northern India’; ‘Discover Southern India & Kerala’
Europe: ‘Sicily’; ‘Athens & 7-night Idyllic Aegean Islands Cruise’ (with Celestyal)’ ‘Madrid & Southern Spain’; ‘Discover the Eastern Med’; ‘Russian River Cruise onboard the M.S. Chernishevsky’
Faith: ‘The Camino: A Walking Journey for the Soul’
North America: ‘Western Canada with Inside Passage’; ‘High Desert Discovery’; ‘Exploring the Eastern Seaboard’
South Pacific: ‘Tropical Fiji’
South & Central America, Antarctica: ‘Andean Journey’; ‘Peru’s Amazon & the Andes’; ‘Exploring Darwin’s Galapagos’; ‘Argentina & Chile’s Lake District’; ‘Voyage to Antarctica’; ‘Best of Guatemala & Costa Rica’
Europe: ‘Tulip Time in Holland & Belgium’; ‘A Taste of the Rhine’; ‘The Heart of Germany’; ‘Danube Symphony’; ‘Magnificent Rivers of Europe’; ‘Grand German Sojourn’; ‘European Masterpiece’; ‘Danube Serenade’