TTC to host 'future of travel' webinars for agents
20 May 2020by James Chapple
The Travel Corporation (TTC) has pledged to help the trade "prepare for the new world" by hosting a series of agent training webinars focusing on its new Covid-19 protocols.
TTC says its executive and operations teams have conducted a "complete review" of sanitation and hygiene measures across all guest experiences and interactions offered by its guided holiday brands – Trafalgar, Insight Vacations, Luxury Gold, Contiki and Costsaver.
This extends from the moment guests meet their travel directors and trip managers, to all coach travel, hotel stays and excursions.
Chief executive Brett Tollman said TTC was ready to comply with any new testing, physical distancing and/or hygiene requirements imposed in countries where its brands operate, in accordance with World Heath Organization guidance.
He added TTC’s new practices would also aim to offer guests "much-needed peace of mind" while travelling with one of the group’s brands.
TTC will be hosting several agent training webinars on "the future of travel" and its enhanced protocols "to assist the trade in preparing for our new world"; agents will also soon receive brand emails and updates from sales managers with dates and session times so they can register.
The group has also pledged to share best practices with active members of the World Travel and Tourism Council to further define new measures and protocols that can be applied globally on a consistent basis.
“As we adapt to this new world, our dedicated, diligent TTC team members across the globe are preparing and will be implementing enhanced training, procedures and numerous new measures throughout our various guest experiences offered, with the very best possible care and service," said Tollman.
"These new protocols will be adapted and adjusted as needed, in a timely manner, as governments define and implement what will be required in each country."
TTC’s new protocols are:
- New training for travel directors; TTC’s travel directors and trip managers will be trained in these new and enhanced hygiene and physical distancing procedures. They will operate caring duty of care and will monitor the hygiene etiquette of guests during their trips, reacting and advising as needed to ensure high standards are maintained. Also, they will have new preventative measures in place to try and ensure guests’ well-being and, in the event that any unexpected issues arise on trip, they will activate additional protocols.
- 24/7 support team; not only will these travel directors and drivers take great care and concern for each guest on these guided journeys, but further, behind the scenes, TTC’s operations and guest support teams are in contact with them and on call 24/7, so travel advisers and their clients can rest assured that they are in good hands.
- Stringent on-the-road protocols; TTC’s coaches are sanitised before the start of each trip and have always been kept to very high standards. Drivers will now be trained with the latest hygiene protocols and will clean and disinfect all surfaces including handrails, door handles, tables, seats, air-conditioning filters and overhead lockers on a daily basis. All of TTC’s guests will be asked to follow hygiene practices recommended by the World Health Organization including the thorough and regular washing of hands and sanitising when required. Hand sanitiser is freely available on board for the guests to use throughout the day. It will be encouraged for clients to bring their own washable face mask and gloves (as these are required to be worn in public in some countries, and on many airlines now), and to bring additional hand sanitiser with them. In addition, should an unexpected situation arise, additional face masks, rubber gloves, antiviral sprays and wipes will be readily available for guests on all trips.
- Working with trusted partners; TTC is very selective in who they work with and choose to only use hotels, restaurants, ground handlers and venues that take the health and well-being of their guests as seriously as TTC does, and agree to meet expected guidelines and specifications. TTC will try hard to only work with establishments that they are confident will consistently adhere to our standards.
- Physical distancing; TTC will be adapting to the right size groups, based on government distancing requirements. Travel agents’ clients can rest assured that they will travel with the comfort of their own personal space and have peace of mind that all of the experiences, hotels and restaurants they will enjoy on their trip have been vetted to ensure they adhere to physical distancing and hygiene guidelines required in each jurisdiction.
- Smaller groups, more personal space; With Luxury Gold and Insight Vacations’ smaller groups and customised coaches with fewer seats, guests not only enjoy twice the legroom of a standard coach but also more personal space on board. Smaller groups also mean less queuing whilst embarking and disembarking, as well as at hotels and attractions, so it is easier to maintain a comfortable physical distance. On their future trips, the brands have also worked to ensure their travellers are divided into smaller groups at each stop, to ensure the required physical distancing.
- In the know; As part of TTC, each travel brand is kept up to date with government advisories and travel alerts and is continually in touch with their partners on the ground in each destination. Now, under TTC’s new protocols, their teams will work to try and ensure that their supplier partners (hotels, restaurants, museums and other venues) are also applying the same, new required hygiene and distancing protocols, to the extent possible.