Scottish agency Barrhead Travel has spent £500,000 this year on expanding and refurbishing shops, as well as investing in technology and staff.
During 2019, the Glasgow-based company has opened a new branch in Edinburgh and spent a “six-figure sum” on upgrades and expansions for existing stores.
Improvements include a new “experiential” area in Barrhead’s Glasgow Superstore, in partnership with Universal Orlando Resort, which includes the creation of a holiday booking lounge with virtual reality stations and a selfie-area.
Outlets in Aberdeen and Livingston, as well as Barrhead’s sales support unit in Oswald Street, Glasgow, have all been refurbished.
Jacqueline Dobson, president of Barrhead Travel, said: “This year we focused on our core foundations; bricks and mortar, technology, and most importantly, our people.
“Bricks and mortar is still at the forefront of our growth strategy as we believe that when it comes to booking your well-earned holiday, there is no substitute for having the option to speak face-to-face with a genuine expert.
“We are dedicated to investing in the high street however we must remain innovative to stay competitive. We do this by integrating audio-visual technology into our customer journey to create a multidimensional retail experience.”
Technology remains a priority with Barrhead recently appointing a new head of e-commerce to upgrade the firm’s websites and IT.
Half of the investment figure has been dedicated to people development and training with more than £250,000 allocated to “upskill and nurture” Barrhead’s workforce.
The agency is also currently recruiting for the new position of head of people development who will take responsibility for the online Talent Management Programme, due to launch next month.