An agent, who was made redundant at the height of the pandemic, has opened his own store under the Inspire Travel banner.
Taylor, who was let go from his management position with Tui last March, has in recent months been working on a business plan with a view to launching Inspire Travel by Shaun in Bourne, Lincolnshire.
"I have always wanted to run my own travel business, and when I saw the store in Bourne’s Abbey Road become vacant, I jumped at the chance," said Taylor, who launch the business on Saturday (5 June).
Despite the news of Portugal being relegated to the UK’s government amber list last Thursday (3 June), Taylor said he was pleasantly surprised at the number of local people who dropped by the store at the weekend.
"The travel industry has been hit really hard by the pandemic, but we know there is a huge pent-up demand," said Taylor. "When more destinations are eventually added to the green list, there will be a massive rush to get away.
"If there is one thing that the pandemic has shown us is that the role of the travel agent has never been so important. The value we add and the peace of mind we provide to customers is enormous and never more so than now with the changing landscape we are operating in."
Over the past 12 years, Taylor has worked for some of the UK’s largest travel brands, including Thomas Cook and Tui, in both finance and treasury roles.
He added that despite the uncertainty around international travel at this time, a number of passers-by stopped to make appointments. "Everyone who came in was really positive about having a travel agent back in town. There was lots interest but, naturally, also some concerns too," said Taylor.
Lisa Henning, recently appointed managing director of Inspire, said: "We are delighted to be helping Shaun fulfil his career ambition of opening his own travel store and wish him every success.
"With Shaun’s vast travel knowledge, we have every confidence that he will be very successful with his new venture."