Luxury deals site Voyage Privé targets 750,000 members

p://" target="_blank">Voyage?Privé aims to almost double its UK membership to 750,000 this year as it approaches its first anniversary since launching in Britain.

The invitation-only site each week emails deals offering members up to 70% discounts on four and five-star holidays. The offers are available to book for a limited period, usually five days.

The focus is not on last-minute deals ?- offers are available to book months in advance. Product available ranges from tour operator packages and hotel-only to dynamic packages put together under the company's Atol.

Managing director John Bevan, formerly of, said the site was able to get the best deals because prices were visible only to the closed user group.

"We push the suppliers hard to get upgrades or spa treatments to give genuine added value," he said.

"And we don't feature more than one hotel in each destination in each email, so it's huge exposure for them."

The site acquires customers through highly targeted email marketing and partnerships with companies such as Daily?Candy. Many of the sign-ups come from users referring friends or family.

The UK site has 400,000 members and Bevan is confident this number will grow to 750,000 by the end of the year. In France, where the brand originated, the business has 4.5 million members.

"We are confident we will see a fivefold increase in turnover in 2011," said Bevan. "There is a long way to go before it feels too big. At that size I think it still feels like a special, private members' club."

Bevan intends to grow the company's internal tour operating arm this year as well as adding cruise and no-frills airlines. He is also keen to work with more specialist operators.

The next few weeks will see the launch of a live chat facility that will pop up if customers linger on a page for a certain length of time.

"I feel we are going back to the idea of the old-fashioned, knowledgeable agent," added Bevan.

"We take the hassle out of booking a holiday and give people good ideas. People often tell me they end up travelling somewhere they had never thought of before."

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