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TOP TRAVEL AGENCY SCOTLAND


TTG news editor Jennifer Morris joined Sarah Weetman, Royal Caribbe called Sushi (listed on LAH’s Travel’s site as company chairman), ex


.GLEN TRAVEL, BLANTYRE


Established in 1973 by David Glen Senior, Glen Travel is one of Scotland’s oldest independent travel businesses and continues to innovate. The term “keeping it in the family” rings true here, with the agency – and in-house consolidator upstairs – now run by brothers David, Alan (SPAA president) and Douglas Glen. Store manager Michele Lister and her team work hard to post attractive deals on social media, and their enthusiasm shines through when they describe to Royal Caribbean’s Sarah Weetman, George Scott and me their experiences hosting a school assembly together. If a customer is in need, staff will rally round to reach a solution – an example includes a client in Rome losing their passport on a Saturday night. Based in a shopping parade, Glen


Travel will relocate to larger premises in April, when the business will also undergo a tech, communications and design overhaul. Glen Travel’s 60% repeat customer rate encompasses a loyal local customer base (the firm saw £80,000 in sales after a recent cruise fair), but also clients from elsewhere in the UK and globally, helped by the recent revamp of its websites. Glen Travel has also been


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Barrhead’s Oswald Street manager Jonathan Munro (centre) with so


including a branded rickshaw to transport customers, and giving each department the autonomy to oversee its marketing.


Royal’s Sarah Weetman and George Scott (centre) with Glen Travel’s Alan Glen (left) and Michele Lister


investing in analytics software to inform its offers and their performance.


.BARRHEAD TRAVEL, OSWALD STREET, GLASGOW


The slick operation of Barrhead Travel’s flagship store is apparent as soon as we walk in, when we are greeted immediately. The store, which made it into the TTG Top 50 last year, piques interest even from the outside, with TV screens bearing tailored deals and the vast shop floor visible – including a new princess-filled Disney booking area and events space, in which Royal Caribbean’s Sarah Weetman and I take great interest. Store manager Jonathon Munro plans to extend the canteen area to encourage more mixing between teams, and is evidently proud of his staff. There are 11 Modern Apprentices (MAs) based in the Glasgow Superstore and five who


TOP 50 TRAVEL AGENCIES 2017 SHORTLIST


became fully qualified travel advisors last year with clear personal development guidance, including trainers. Not only does the store have a clearly defined customer service strategy, with a 70% repeat customer rate, but also a comprehensive charity focus, supporting numerous organisations. Staff are offered a day off for voluntary work and some even dressed as elves to fundraise at Glasgow Children’s Hospital over Christmas. Barrhead has come up with some innovative ways to market itself,


.LAH TRAVEL, WEST KILBRIDE


Linda Hill, owner and manager of LAH Travel, is a voice of authority on the local business scene and says her role on the Ayrshire Association of Business Women (she became president on February 1) stands her in good stead for networking and marketing her business via word of mouth, with a 70% repeat customer rate. More novel marketing techniques include offering anyone who snaps a picture of her branded smart car out and about £25 off a holiday. The agency is bright and eye-catching,


Jennifer Morris (left) and Sarah Weetman


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