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News 27.10.16 TTNG EVENT


Agents to ‘Evolve’ at cruise conference


MORE THAN 110 members of The Travel Network Group’s Cruise Club have signed up to attend the group’s cruise conference “Evolve”, which takes place in Birmingham on November 13. The focus of this year’s conference


is on how the sector is evolving, with delegates set to hear from Lisa McAuley, Silversea UK and Ireland general manager and commercial director, as well as representatives from Scenic, Azamara and Oceania, plus Andy Harmer, vice-president operations Clia Europe. Members will also participate in a business partner forum, which will feature representatives from more than 21 cruise lines, who will hold workshops discussing new product training and luxury cruising. Si Morris-Green, group marketing


director, The Travel Network Group, said: “The theme for this year’s conference is Evolve – we will look at how members can evolve their cruise business, and how they can think and act differently to increase their cruise sales.” The conference will also feature a


gala dinner and awards, including Cruise Agency of the Year – Small/ Big Member; Most Innovative Cruise Agent of the Year – Big /Small; Cruise Homeworker of the Year; Most Engaged Member Award and Luxury Cruise Agent of the Year.


SINGLES HOLIDAYS


Just You events to ‘dispel the myths’ about solo travel


SOLO TRAVEL specialist Just You is to back a programme of 200 events with agents to promote singles holidays. The brand, part of the All Leisure


Group, wants agents to host events where it will send a representative and provide a marketing toolkit. “When planning to go on a solo holiday it can all seem very daunting


08 27.10.2016


for customers,” said Polly Poulton, Just You’s national account manager. “We will help to dispel the myths, such as customers thinking they will have to pay a single supplement, [face] loneliness or lack of choice.” Just You believes it is part of a


growing market. According to research specialist Mintel, the singles


Solo travel is a fast-growing market


population has increased by 14% in the past decade. Escorted tours for the single


traveller are now one of the fastest-


Currency sales on rise despite sterling slump


Gary Noakes


TRAVELLERS heading to nearly 20 of the world’s most popular destinations this month found the pound worth at least 15% less than a year ago, according to Post Office Money. Only Mexico and South Africa have


seen less than a 15% slump in value for sterling purchases among a basket of 20 currencies surveyed by the Post Office. More alarmingly, the figures


spell out sterling’s slump against the euro and US dollar. The exchange rate against the


euro has fallen 18.5% in the year to October 17, with a pound worth €1.08 on that day, while sterling was worth 21.2% less against the dollar in the same period, with a rate last Monday of $1.19. The big winner was Mexico, whose


8.9% rise against sterling has not dented the country’s value for the vast majority of clients, while South Africa, with a 16.5% rise against sterling, is still great value at 16.6 rand to the pound, which likely helped to prompt the launch of new flights to Cape Town this winter from British Airways and Thomas Cook.


Iceland meanwhile could end up


regaining its image as an expensive destination following a 27.6% increase in the value of the krona. The country was not the biggest gainer against sterling though; the Japanese yen and Brazilian real grew more than 30% against the pound in the last year. The Brazilian real was worth 3.53


to the pound on October 17, meaning that anything bought in this currency is 34% more expensive than last year. The Post Office points out, however, that the real fell significantly between 2014 and 2015, as did the Russian ruble. Compared with 2014, the


The pound still goes a long way in Mexico


Russian ruble is now 20% weaker against sterling, while the Brazilian real is worth around 1% less against sterling than two years ago. The good news is that Post Office


2016 currency sales are still outperforming 2015, when sterling was far stronger. An example is the Icelandic krona, which is up 18% year-on-year due to the rapid growth of budget flights. Andrew Brown, head of Post


Office Travel Money, insisted that the weaker pound had “not dented UK holidaymakers’ appetite for travel so far”.


growing types of group travel according to Mintel, with predictions that the singles population is expected to grow twice as fast as the non-singles population between 2008 and 2033. Colin Wilson, Just You’s group sales


director, added: “Just You has run similar events in the past and they have proven to be a huge success for the agents, with many taking bookings for solo travel afterwards.” Just You offers 70 destinations on


every continent with guaranteed no single room supplements.


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