TTG Top 50
April 25, 2019 | The Vox Birmingham | #TTGTop50

Strand Travel, Waterford

strandtravel.com

Strand was named the Republic of Ireland’s Top Agency at last year’s Top 50 ceremony, but boss Tom O’Donohoe and his team have not rested on their laurels since then.

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The store has gained a sleek new frontage, as well as a new Cruise Centre at the back of the store, complete with luxury swivel chairs and greater privacy for those all-important cruise enquiries.

There’s been a particular focus on cruise lines within the agency’s recent training strategy, and all of the team have now sailed on at least one ship. Cruise complements many other short and long-haul trips taken across the team in the last 12 months, to boost their product knowledge.

Every educational trip is leveraged to the max, with consultants writing editorial pieces for the local My Waterford magazine; their destination reports have been proven in reader surveys to be the most popular section of the publication.

Strand Travel’s bookable website is now two years old and performing well, but this agency bridges the gap between quick online sales and service-led offline sales by calling many online customers after booking, to ensure the holiday selected will be to their satisfaction.

The warmth and camaraderie of the Strand Travel team is apparent as soon as you enter this store, and despite him being managing director of a sizeable business, you are as likely to find Tom stamping brochures in January as anyone else.

By investing in management and social media training for key members of staff, he has empowered the team to generate its own ideas on how to grow the business. This means marketing manager Bernice has had free rein to experiment with Instagram, for example.

The level of care and customer service this team delivers is no doubt another contributing factor to Strand Travel’s impressive 20% growth in retail sales last year.

In one recent case, store manager Darren helped an elderly couple amend their plans when the husband was taken into hospital in the States, not only rearranging all their travel plans, but calling the wife every single day to check on them.

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