Award-winning franchise gains reputation for fast-tracking first-time travel agents

12 July 2022

Pent-up demand following travel restrictions during the pandemic, means there’s never been a better time to branch out in the industry. And for those who have never worked in travel one company stands out. Voted ‘Best Travel Franchise’ in 2022  in SME News’ Business Elite Awards, The Travel Franchise is outperforming rivals in terms of recruitment and holidays sales and gaining a reputation for giving budding entrepreneurs a chance to either dip their toe in the water or scale-up fast.

Having trained over 900 consultants, 99 per cent of which are new to travel, it’s no wonder The Travel Franchise is winning awards and gaining a reputation for being the UK’s number one home-working agency for people who have never worked in the industry before.

On top of providing everything required to run a travel agency - new franchisees get an instant travel agency that can be trading in as little as one week - the company has also gained an outstanding reputation for providing ongoing support and mentorship. An integral component for newcomers to become successful travel agents and entrepreneurs.

While some franchisees completely change their career overnight - with some outstanding success stories - others opt to start part-time, allowing them to scale up their new business at their own pace, often alongside another career.

Recently, The Travel Franchise broke new ground in the travel sector by offering a unique low-cost, low-risk Lite package for people who want to trial a business around other work or life commitments. With start-up costs of just £2,995 + monthly subscription, entrepreneurs can still benefit from award-winning support and training without needing to commit full-time immediately.

This flexible option has clearly paid off, with over 135 new franchisees joining during the pandemic alone. And, with sales up 300% and passenger booking records being broken almost daily, many have already chosen to upgrade their package to make it their full-time occupation.

Refusing to stand still during the pandemic, the company has also this year invested over a million pounds into operations, technology, staff and customer-facing ‘Not Just Travel’ brand, to support both franchisees and their customers who chose to book holidays with them.

Bespoke business software-enabled seamless customer support when refunds were at their highest. New sustainability programmes helped create significant, long-term change with every passenger booking. And brand new marketing initiatives were made available to all franchisees, including ‘The Travel Podcast’, which kept them front of mind with potential new customers. Launched in the early days of lockdown, it rapidly reached number one in the iTunes charts, inspiring people to plan ahead for future holidays. 

The business also places a large emphasis on corporate and social responsibility. Franchisees and team members were supported with financial aid and emotional wellbeing programmes during the pandemic. It is also currently paying staff £350 a month to host Ukrainian families escaping the war, all while continuing to invest in expansion.

The company’s achievements have not only seen it win ‘Best Travel Franchise’ in 2022  in SME News’ Business Elite Awards, but its founders, Steve Witt and Paul Harrison, are finalists for Scale-Up Entrepreneur of the Year (South West), at the 2022 Great British Entrepreneur Awards.

With plans in place to quadruple sales in the next 12 months, as part of further major technology and joint venture initiatives, this business is clearly one to watch.

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