2019 may go down as something of a rollercoaster year in travel and beyond, but at Travel Counsellors, we go into the new year with confidence and positivity, feeling thankful that we’ve had plenty to celebrate this past 12 months.
More awards for our cabinet
As well as picking up Travel Weekly’s ‘Best Travel Homeworking Agency’ award for the sixth year running, we were rewarded with a repeat listing and an improved ranking in the prestigious 'Sunday Times Track 250'.
We were named TTG's 'Top Homeworking Agency' for the fourth time, were shortlisted for the second year as 'Best TMC' at the Business Travel Awards and as 'Top Business Travel Agency' in the TTG Top 50.
We won Best National Travel Retailer at the British Travel Awards. This means a lot to us as the award is voted for by the British public. Our loyal customers voted in huge numbers to put us ahead of household names such as Hays, Virgin Holidays and TUI.
During 2019 over 550,000 customers travelled with us and our commitment to caring was reflected in our world-class leading customer satisfaction score of 96%. As a result, we’ve had another recording-breaking year to add to our collection, with group sales up 10%, topping the £650m mark for the first time ever.
Tour Operator Growth
The business generated from Phenix - our bespoke in-house booking platform - has grown by 20% this year, meaning over 50% of all bookings are made through Phenix.
During 2019 we supported 300 new business owners in joining the Travel Counsellors community, taking the total number of travel entrepreneurs now using our platform to over 1,900 in seven countries around the world.
Of those 300, 50 former Thomas Cook staff opened a new chapter in their lives, successfully starting their own travel businesses with us.
Travel Counsellors for Business
Our Corporate arm, Travel Counsellors for Business, also went from strength to strength this year. 2019 was our best-ever year in Business Travel, with Global sales of over £175m - up a massive 18% on the previous year. And that’s not all; this year has seen more corporate Travel Counsellors packages booked through our in-house platform, Phenix, than ever before, over 40% up on the previous year.
More of our Travel Counsellors are getting involved in booking business travel - over 500 UK Travel Counsellors made a corporate booking this year.
We’ve also welcomed more new business clients this year too - over 700 new companies joined us in the last 12 months alone, with our top ten corporate clients spending over £1m a year with us, and some of our largest clients spending over £2.5m each.
Moments that Mattered
2019 was special for a host of reasons, not least of which was that it marked our 25th anniversary. Our star-studded Annual Conference celebrated ‘Moments that Matter’.
A trio of tech enhancements was announced, our corporate travel and tour operator growth was reported and business opportunities and sales techniques for the year ahead were identified and explained.
More than 3,000 of our worldwide team enjoyed a full weekend of insight and entertainment, with keynote speaker Bear Grylls OBE, Gary Barlow and Paloma Faith among a raft of celebrities from the world of sport and entertainment topping the bill.
All of which leaves us energised, motivated and totally focused for the new year ahead.
So here’s to 2020, everyone!
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