24 SEP 2018: Tis the season for tour operator launches and road shows and Transat is no exception. The tour company wrapped up its cross-Canada product training series last week with events in Toronto, Hamilton and London, following earlier September stops in Vancouver, Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Halifax and Montreal.

Transat sales director Dan Prior says the company chose to focus this year on cities where it has significant lift. The format of the events, which attracted up to 500 agents in larger cities and 200-300 in the smaller ones, was also designed to “break out of the traditional travel academy showcases of the past.”

The events still boasted a trade show component, with between 30 and 60 travel partners depending on the city, but also featured nine breakout seminar sessions in which attendees were invited to get the latest news on and directly from key sponsors, which included Barcelo, Excellence, Melia Int., Melia Cuba, Palladium, Karisma, Iberostar, AMResorts and Decameron.

Gold sponsor Bahia Principe also presented to the entire audience while Prior noted that all the sessions tied back to Transat, including special offers it has in the marketplace.

For its part, Transat purposely avoided any particular themes this year, other than the obvious connection to its Fun and Sun brochure, but did place an emphasis on its air product and how agents can better sell Transat, from bigger niches like groups to “little things that agents run across in the system.”

The overall idea was to deliver a dynamic series of events – including ditching the traditional but static sit-down dinner for food stations – that would engage and inspire agents to help get the winter booking season rolling. And with in the neighbourhood of 3,000 agents across the country on board, it’s certainly been a great start, says Prior.

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Michael Baginski

Editor at Large, Mike Baginski is well known and well respected within the industry across Canada, the US, in the Caribbean, Mexico and numerous other destinations outside North America.

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