Seller of the week

29 Oct 2015
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Mystery Shopper's seller of the week: virginholidays.co.uk

This week we hit the high street in Leeds to book a break in Sri Lanka. How did the agents fare?

Mystery Shopper virginholidays.co.uk
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Mystery Shopper hits Leeds to book a break in Sri Lanka. How did the agents fare?

The mystery shopper visited two travel agencies in Leeds and requested a relaxing 10-day holiday to Sri Lanka for two friends in February 2016, with a maximum budget of £3,500.

 

They then made two Google.co.uk searches using the term ‘Sri Lanka beach holiday’

The winner

The winner

virginholidays.co.uk

 

Score: 88%

 

Mystery Shopper said: The website had a very clear layout, the pictures set the mood, and I was offered an immediate option to tailor the holiday to my needs. There was lots of information regarding legal requirements, weather and top-rated attractions. It was easy to navigate between offers, and they were ranked by price. The booking process was easy to follow. There was a clear breakdown of the price, upgrades were reiterated with each step and flight options were clear, with flexibility to change dates. I chose the Cinnamon Lakeside, overlooking Lake Beira, which came in at £2,568 with flights. An option to save the booking in a basket so I could compare it was handy. There were flexible payment options, and an online discount was automatically deducted. As a customer I felt like I was in control of my options. Overall the process was informative and well structured, with great visuals.

Things to see and do in Sri Lanka

  • At Mount Lavinia, just seven miles from Colombo, relax and enjoy the sea, joining the locals playing cricket and surfing on Sundays. The typical fishing town of Negombo, set amid lush coconut groves, has great, spicy seafood. South of Colombo, Beruwela marks the beginning of a glorious 80-mile stretch of beaches, with great bathing in the bay year round.

  • Trincomalee – known as Trinco to the locals, this unspoilt destination was visited by Horatio Nelson who described it as having the finest harbour in the world. With a thriving market at its centre and wonderful beaches you can bask in the sun or engage in something a little more active with surfing, diving and whale and dolphin-watching.

  • Sri Lanka is a haven for romance. Take your vows on a perfect beach, in a flower-filled garden, or in the jungle amid the ruins of an ancient kingdom, accompanied by dancers, drummers and traditional singers. Spend your honeymoon relaxing on the beach, enjoying Ayurvedic spa treatments and touring the hill stations, tea plantations and rainforests.

React Surveys explainer / disclaimer

TTG has teamed up with React Surveys to simulate a realistic booking process each week – that means a mystery shopper looking for the best deal from agents and operators on the high street, online, on TV or in newspapers. The Mystery Shopper research is carried out on behalf of TTG by React Surveys,and no further details or information can be disclosed. Researchers take into consideration first impression, sales process, product and budget match and extras offered before giving an unbiased opinion of which channel/company they would have booked with on that occasion. We do not claim that the winner is the best in an area or specialist sector, as we may report on competing travel firms in the future. Please note that the aim of Mystery Shopper is not to criticise individual agents or companies, but to promote good sales technique for the benefit of all in the travel trade.

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TTG Media Limited.
Place of registration: England and Wales.
Company number 08723341.
Registered address: New Bridge Street House, 30-34 New Bridge Street, London EC4V 6BJ
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