Leisure Travel News reports that The Noel Group, the company which owns travel insurance companies including Travel Guard International, has launched a new business that provides after-hours client services for travel agencies.
The new company is called Livetravel and is designed to offer 24-hour, 7-day support services to agencies when they are closed. Telephone counsellors, according to Livetravel president John Rose, will be able to rebook flights, make hotel reservations, track lost luggage and replace lost credit cards. Agents get full commission credit for any additional travel sales to clients through the service, according to Rose, who is also the president of Marathon Travel Shops, a Noel-owned agency in Wisconsin.
The company also plans to offer an interactive Internet service, including a webcam so the customer can view the agent, for clients who prefer using their computer instead of a phone when they need assistance enroute. The service began in January.
According to Livetravel Vice President Dan McGinnity, the cost of the service to the agency is between $14 and $16 per customer call. An initial customer of the service is the American Express Representative Agency network, McGinnity said.