Insight Vacations is envisaging a return to its heyday of 10 or so years ago selling Egypt in Australia. Before the Arab Spring of 2011, Egypt and the guided holiday specialists’ Ancient Civilisations program were huge sellers, especially in the Australian market.
This month, Insight Vacations announced the return of a standalone brochure for its Ancient Civilisations program to Egypt and Turkey. In Sydney this week, Insight Vacations Global CEO Ulla Hefel Böhler kicked off the brochure’s relaunch in an individual format alongside the release of its Europe and Britain core program for 2020/21.
The new 2020/21 Ancient Civilisations brochure may suggest the destination had been completely rested from Insights’ offering, and around the Arab Spring there was a period of time when “essentially our insurance company told us we cannot sell Egypt,” Hefel Böhler revealed to LATTE. But that period elapsed years ago, and Egypt has featured within Insight Vacations’ Europe & Britain program in the years since.
“We’ve never really stopped selling Ancient Civilisations. We’ve always sold Greece, a bit of Turkey, but the volume wasn’t big enough for its own standalone brochure. It’s always had a certain number of itineraries, whereas now, in the last 10-12 months, it’s really been those regions that have come back strongly. Egypt. Turkey as well. Greece has been consistent the past couple of years. Israel is strong, as is Jordan.
“So we felt the time was right to really give it its own separate brochure,” Hefel Bohler told LATTE.
The brochure itself features a striking image of Tutankhamun’s mask on the front cover.
“If someone is looking to go to Egypt, then this cover really jumps out at you, and the brochure provides us with the platform to go into more detail than we can in the Europe & Britain program.”
“Insight Vacations sold huge volumes of Egypt. And Turkey as well,” the former Sydneysider explained, but the anti-government protests, riots and uprising of 2011 “changed it all”.
“But now it’s time to claim that high ground again,” she remarked.
Egypt is not only prominently featured in the Insight Vacations’ portfolio, but also to that of the company’s upmarket sister-brand, Luxury Gold.
Hefel Böhler said she was quite optimistic and that the latest anti-government clashes on the streets of Cairo this week are “just a minor bump in the road”.
“We are in close contact with our local partners on the ground who don’t seem to be concerned at all. Obviously we are staying very up-to-date on the situation, but at this point in time I don’t have any real concerns in that regard,” she said.
Insight Vacations’ Ancient Civilisations program isn’t wholly focused on Egypt and Turkey, with the program also offering options for Greece, Morocco, Jordan and Israel too. What is new though is an expansion into India, Sri Lanka and Nepal.
“Luxury Gold has operated trips to India, Sri Lanka and Nepal for a number of years and based on feedback from our customers and agents, they said, ‘It would be lovely to get to Sri Lanka but not everyone has the budget for Luxury Gold. We’d love to have something within the Insight portfolio.’ So we are introducing that for 2020 which is exciting.”
Insight Vacations’ 55-page Ancient Civilisations’ brochure features 18 trips to nine countries. For more information, see insightvacations.com/au