Jet2holidays has extended its pledge to maintain the same level of agents’ commission until at least 2017.
The promise was just one of a series of measures to support independent agents announced by the operator at its first overseas conference, hosted at the Iberostar Royal Cristina in Palma, Mallorca last week.
Jet2holidays has seen the number of its holidays booked through agents leaping from 500 in 2010 to 370,000 in 2015.
Chief executive Steve Heapy told TTG: “We want agents to have another year of concentrating on their businesses, without worrying about commission.
“We’re all working in the same challenging environment and we want to give agents that reassurance. More than 34% of our business is sold through travel agents and we want to increase that.”
Other measures to support agents revealed at the conference, themed Partnership2Success, include an investment in more on-the-road reps and staff at its trade call centre, and improvements to its trade website.
“We base our business on a partnership with agents - over a third of our business has always been through agents.”
The operator is also investing in customer service - next year will see overseas reps increasing from 170 to 250, meaning one rep to every 300 customers.
“No other tour operator is investing in reps like we are. We also have our 24 hour-a-day, 365-days-a-year emergency helpline, manned by 18 people, and no other tour operator is dong that. We’re also offering more customer helpers and check in staff at airports.”
“If someone goes on a two-star holiday they deserve to be treated with the same level of service as a luxury customer,” added Heapy.
“We only stay in hotels we would stay in ourselves. Every one of our hotels is inspected, and nothing goes on sale until we are completely satisfied.”
Earlier this month parent company Dart Group reported a doubling in group operating profit to £147.1 million for the six months to September 30, 2015, boosted by a 15% rise in revenue in the its leisure travel division.
The company is gearing up for further growth by buying 27 new Boeing 737-800NG aircraft to be delivered between September 2016 and April 2018.