The Virtuoso luxury travel network has bolstered its membership base, adding nearly 20 new travel agencies around the world, the bulk of which are in the Asia Pacific region.
Two of the new additions are located in Australia; luxury and experiential travel agent, Sydney-based Discerning Traveller, along with TTFN Travel (Ta Ta For Now) which has branches in Perth and Melbourne. Their participation takes the total number of members in Australia to 74, according to Virtuoso’s website.
Virtuoso Group GM Strategy and Managing Director for APAC, Michael Londregan told LATTE the network had observed in Australia and New Zealand that many travel agencies were using the COVID crisis downturn to “interrogate their businesses”.
“We at Virtuoso have been inundated with dialogue from agencies and advisors who are looking at finding a stronger value proposition. We have no doubt that recovery will favour trusted travel advisors and they will secure a dominant share of future revenues,” Londregan remarked.
The country with the largest fresh intake of members was China where there were five new additions: Bridge Travel, Domi Luxury, Hujn Luxury Travel, LE Travel, Reception Expert and Sichuan Freshtour International Travel Service.
“In Asia, we are a very new business and as such we are seeing our brand penetrate the market with significant growth as luxury agencies respond to our global brand and programs,” Londregan added.
In other parts of the world, Virtuoso added three members in the United States, two in both France and South Korea and individual agencies in Brazil, Canada, Greece and the United Kingdom.
Commenting on the overall growth in membership, Albert Herrera, Virtuoso’s Senior Vice President of Global Partnerships said: “At a time when the travel industry is facing some of its most difficult times, we are encouraged by the continued interest we see from travel agencies looking to join our network.”
Agencies that join the network benefit from access and the recognition that comes from affiliation with the Virtuoso brand. Their membership opens up a suite of benefits available through Virtuoso’s preferred partner portfolio, which includes more than 2,000 of hotels and resorts, cruise lines, tour operators, destination management companies and sought-after destinations.