Help is at hand for two lucky agencies – Destina Travel and Key Holidays – who have won business support throughout 2020 from the TTG Travel Heroes. Here, we introduce the winners.
Destina Travel is based in the village of Hagley, near Stourbridge in the West Midlands, and has been trading from the same shop for about 50 years.
The agency was formerly known as Mercian Travel before rebranding to Destina as part of a makeover in 2017, and is a member of The Travel Network Group (TTNG). It also runs its own bridge and bowling tour operation to Spain for four months every winter.
Destina currently employs five staff, including two recent younger recruits, while a sixth team member works for the tour operation on a consultancy basis.
Being based in the same high street shop for so many decades, Destina has benefited from getting business from multigenerational members of the same families. Its key family market has also been bolstered by a new nearby housing estate with 200 homes.
Destina’s other key demographics are over-60s customers – 30% of the client base – while solo travellers account for 20% of sales, and groups 2%. The agency has a repeat booking rate of 60%.
The type of holidays being sold are evenly split between long-haul, short-haul packages and ocean cruises, which each account for 25% of sales. Escorted touring is strong with 20% of bookings, with the other 5% of sales going on river cruises.
A major reason for the rebrand from Mercian Travel to Destina three years ago was to take advantage of being based in an affluent area, with the agency feeling that it had not been successfully advertising to the right people under its previous name. But while this move has created impressive growth in attracting new customers, this momentum now seems to have plateaued.
The agency may have seen some benefit from Thomas Cook’s collapse in late September with October being a particularly good month for newclients.