I love January

Cathy Burke, General Manager

cathy new

It's my favourite month of the year when we are so busy I sometimes can't think straight and the buzz in the industry is electrifying! The main thing for all of us in the industry is that it's the most important month of the year. We've had a great start to 2014 already and I believe this is because our Travel Counsellors put their heart and soul into their business ensuring a profitable year individually and as a company. Working from home, of course, can be a bonus for many of them.


But we are not a "homeworking company" even though 95% of our people work from home offices. Travel agents can be bricks and mortar or home-based but that's irrelevant in this day and age and many agents in this country have staff who work from home. What makes us different to everyone else is that we are a global travel company with huge buying power that allows us to be more competitive in this market. We are independent so we can give the customer what they want rather than what we are told to sell to them and we don't compete with our Travel Counsellors.


At this time of year, agents also get frustrated when customers shop around and compare prices with the internet and, of course, the customer has every right to do so. The internet, with it's constant paring of costs and margin, will more than likely deliver the cheapest price (and cheapest product) and many customers are attracted to this way of booking their own travel. But not all customers want cheap; the majority want the best value along with the care, reassurance and impartiality that an independent travel agent can bring. At the same time, not everyone will want the value a travel agent offers but neither will many want the uncertainty of a transaction from a faceless online company they know nothing about. The bottom line is that you cannot be the cheapest and also offer a great customer experience. Computers will never deliver emotion and a holiday is an emotional buy.


At Travel Counsellors we are all about relationships both with our Travel Counsellors and in turn their relationships with customers. We encourage, mentor and coach so that each person builds a personal business that they believe in. Can you imagine having no targets, but goals that you set for yourself without any pressure; setting your own hours and not having a cap on what you can earn?


We provide the best business and personal support and the latest technology to ensure our Travel Counsellors are always one step ahead and are "masters of their own destiny".


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