This year has witnessed the most turbulent of trading periods for the travel industry, with wars and crises continuing to make holidaymakers reluctant to travel.
According to Mark Jones , (pictured) CEO at Online Travel Corporation (OTC), 2003 is the year of the consumer, but the industry can still enjoy a reasonable year.
Jones commented: “Brochure prices are a thing of the past. This year consumers know they will find the deal to suit every need and every wallet, from package holiday companies or websites - such as our own bargainholidays.com - or from high street travel agents.
“The consumer knows the deals are out there, and they will continue to search until they have found exactly what they are looking for. The trade is reporting a shift away from traditional family package holidays, and now more than ever before, the industry must alter its approach to face these new trends, and target consumers effectively.”
He continued: “However, it`s not too late for package holiday companies and the rest of the travel industry to also enjoy a reasonable year. But companies must continue targeting an ever wider and more diverse customer base - from the bargain holidaymaker to independent travellers - through as many sales channels as possible, from the web to travel agents. If they do this and constantly manipulate prices to match demand, they will sell their capacity this year.”
Related stories on ITN:
(07/05/2003) OTC`s Mark Jones Shortlisted for Entrepreneur of the Year Award
(02/05/2003) OTC Bookings Rise Across Travel Websites
(30/04/2003) OTC Announces New Executive Management Board