Sunvil has hailed the trade for getting behind its new product as it plans to increase its range of “by rail” options this year.
Greece and Cyprus specialist Sunvil introduced its first “Greece by rail” holidays last year, and is now looking at additional destinations.
Managing director Chris Wright said the launch had been warmly received, with a number of national press titles picking up on the range.
Sunvil is also exploring new rail product in Italy, Spain and Scandinavia, which Wright said had been driven by the climate debate and growing “slow travel” movement.
“We actually thought there would be more demand from younger people, but it’s those clients in their 70s and 80s making a holiday of the journey itself,” he explained.
Wright said Sunvil was also planning to roll out training to agents on Sunvil’s new rail product, citing the trade’s historic support for the operator’s expansions beyond Greece and Cyprus into regions such as Latin America and Scandinavia.
“We’re looking to do some special training sessions for the trade because it [rail] can be quite daunting at first,” he said.
He added that while Sunvil’s business is split approximately 50:50 trade to direct, this became 60:40 in terms of sales of new holiday types and destinations.
Sunvil last week appointed 3For’s Sophie Fayle its new trade sales manager. She will be supported by two trade sales executives, with Mark Crapper covering the north.
The operator was last week evaluating candidates for a southern counterpart. It comes after the operator pledged to boost its trade team in what is its 50th anniversary year.
Meanwhile, eight agents will join a seven-night Sunvil educational to Greece in May, the first of several trade incentives the operator is planning to host this year.
The second, Wright revealed, will be a trip in late-March for between six to eight agents to Swedish Lapland, home of the country’s indigenous Sami people.
Wright said the trip would reflect Sunvil’s product in the region, with a focus on activities and unique accommodation options, such as the Treehotel in Harads.
Further details, including how agents can secure a place on the trip, will follow in the coming weeks, Wright added.