Hospitality & Tourism

Published: January 1, 2020 | Updated: January 1, 2020

Big Apple proves popular as 2020 holiday sales surge ahead for Dorset-based travel business

Top holiday destination New York by night. Picture by Igor Mattio, Pixabay.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

Holiday sales took off during the Christmas break with a Dorset-based travel company reporting a big surge in bookings.

Not Just Travel, and its recruitment arm The Travel Franchise, said Boxing Day bookings were up 60 per cent year-on-year.

Top selling destinations included New York, Canada, Las Vegas, Tenerife, Turkey, Mexico, Fuerteventura, Lanzarote and the UK.

The holidays included last-minute getaways, family holidays and even stag dos.

Not Just Travel sells bespoke, tailormade holidays through its 750-plus personal travel consultants working from home.

It is one of the fastest growing travel agencies in the UK, employing 46 people at its headquarters at Basepoint near Bournemouth Airport.

The company even recruited a new travel consultant on Christmas Day.

The individual spoke to Co-Founder Paul Harrison on Christmas Eve and made the franchise payment on Christmas Day.

Not Just Travel Co-Founders Steve Witt (left) and Paul Harrison.

Boxing Day also saw a surge in interest on The Travel Franchise website.

Web traffic to the site made it one of the busiest days in the last 90 days.

Co-founder Steve Witt said: “We are a truly customer-led company and everything is designed to make their lives as easy as possible.

“As a result, we even take holiday bookings on Christmas Day.

“The travel industry runs 365 days of the year and so do we. We do everything we can to help our customers, and that helps our travel consultants.”

According to Not Just Travel, 2020 is looking strong with the company predicting a 40 per cent increase in January sales.

Dave Pope, Head of Sales and Training, said: “2019 shows that the homeworking market is booming.

“Both customers and travel consultants are benefitting from the shift in the way people book their holidays – not through high street branches or losing hours booking it themselves online, but through dedicated experts who offer 24/7 concierge style service.

“We are shaking up the travel industry and it’s proving successful.”

Not Just Travel has access to more than 400 suppliers and is a member of the Hays Travel Independence Group, in addition to having its own preferred supplier relationships.

Earlier this month it announced plans to take on more support staff after notching up its most successful year since setting up home in the county nine years ago with total profits up 41 per cent year on year.