The store might only be two years old, but the nine members of staff working there – who between them have accrued close to 100 years of experience – are already making their mark.
The branch is located in a mall on a commercial park on the outskirts of town, and its windows can be themed to capitalise on what is being shown at the adjacent cinema, while staff will stay late if a special event has been organised on the estate.
The business has also set up an annual holiday fair each September, which last year saw 27 operators take over much of the mall for a day – a popular move with local customers.
Staff are kept up-to-speed with weekly in-house training sessions, regular attendance of supplier evenings and at least one overseas educational trip annually. Customers might even post questions via Facebook to the consultant while they are abroad, ensuring they can find out first-hand exactly what a resort is like.
Meanwhile, the service ethic is strong with everything from online check-in to visa advice all part of the day-to-day business, assisted by technology that allows for easy online payments and can send out emails thanking a customer.
Nor is it simply about the job. Staff aim to get out once a month socially to create a strong team spirit that is noticeable the minute you set foot in the shop.
And the branch is also well rooted in the community. Work experience is offered to local schools with up to three placements available each year, while the agency also sponsors an under-11s football team in nearby Seaton and last year raised more than £2,000 raffling a holiday donated by Jet2holidays.
Advertising via local radio and newspapers has also proved effective in rooting the business in its community, as have adverts on the side of local buses.
All of these factors helped Cumbria Travel win plenty of new clients in 2018 and grow business by almost £1 million – proving it is an agency that’s here to stay.