TORONTO — In a move that could signal an upward trend in the travel industry, Virgin Holidays has reportedly announced it will become a customer-direct tour operator after selling through trade for 30 years.
Managing director Mark Anderson commented, “We are investing in our direct channels, including opening new retail stores around the U.K., launching a more intuitive online booking experience and having a dedicated U.K.-based contact centre.”
Anderson also reportedly confirmed that all existing bookings would be honoured, but that there would be a cut-off point for any new bookings made.
According to Anderson, the company has seen consistent growth through its three direct booking channels – its website, call centre and retail shops – and that as a result, trade sales have been gradually declining.
Virgin Holidays recently launched a new type of retail store that has been designed to be more interactive with customers. In addition, to commemorate its 30th birthday, the company recently launched a new range of premium holidays called ‘Wonderlist’ for clients looking for affordable luxury holidays.