Spear Travels agent makes £64k booking after Tipto roadshow

A travel agent has made a £64,000 booking with Abercrombie & Kent after a chance meeting with an industry colleague at a Tipto roadshow.

It is the first time Spear Travels associate Beverly Clarke has booked through the tour operator.
Clarke, a homeworker for the agency, spoke to Richard Hey, A&K’s northern UK and Europe agency sales manager, at the trade marketing association’s Stratford-upon-Avon roadshow in February.

She said: “I’ve known Richard for years but this was the first time I’d spoken to him since he joined A&K.”

Hey told Clarke about the company’s offices abroad as well as its “attention to detail”, with the conversation encouraging her to request a quote for an 11-night trip to the US over Christmas 2023.

She said: “The enquiry was for a very active family of five. Richard was telling me A&K has its own offices on the ground, which meant peace of mind in case of any issues while they are away. I’m always looking for supportive operators.”

Of three quotes sourced, the clients opted for A&K as they preferred the hotels, she added.

Hey, who rejoined the business in May last year, said: “It was great to be able to chat face-to-face and give Beverly the information she needed to feel comfortable to make her first booking with us.”

The family has booked business-class flights, accommodation and car hire for a trip taking in San Francisco, Los Angeles and Las Vegas. It includes a private wine tasting in Napa Valley; a visit to Alcatraz; a cycle ride across the Golden Gate Bridge; Christmas at the Ritz-Carlton Bacara in Santa Barbara; and a stay at Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica.

The family, who have three grown-up children, are hiring two convertible cars to drive from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. Clarke said the clients had been let down previously when they booked direct without using an agent.

Tipto chairman Richard Forde said the association thrived on success stories of this kind.

“These results are what Tipto and its members strive to achieve by arming agents with the confidence and knowledge to turn enquiries into bookings,” he said. “Feedback like this makes our suppliers’ day. It highlights the merits of the networking and learning opportunities we provide.”

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