Virgin Holidays has opened its first concession stores in two Sainsbury’s outlets, with plans to open more over the coming months. The concessions - located in Sainsbury’s Merton and Sainsbury’s Cromwell Road, Kensington - represent the latest stage of the holiday company’s growing retail network, which it expects to reach 100 shops by March 2012.
The new concessions feature the latest touch screen technology to help customers research their holiday options, alongside the more traditional range of brochures. In true Virgin Holidays style, they stand out with eye-catching multi-media displays and inspirational imagery, as well as boasting dedicated areas to occupy the children while Mum and Dad discuss their choices with the team of Virgin Holidays travel experts.
The new stores have some special launch offers for customers, with Las Vegas trips from £799, Thailand from £859 and Orlando from £399.
Mark Anderson, Customer Director for Virgin Holidays, said “Our research has shown us that there is a real appetite amongst customers for face-to-face contact with someone when booking their holiday. Our concession stores bring the Virgin Holidays brand to life like never before, and give shoppers the chance to buy their dream holiday in an environment they’re comfortable in - as well as giving them ample opportunity to discuss options, ask questions and consider their choices before purchasing. We’re extremely excited about out new venture with Sainsbury’s and are very confident about the potential offered by the coming together of two such powerful brands. “
Matt Birch, Sainsbury’s Director of Assets & Estates, said: “We are always looking for new ways to meet the needs of our customers so we are delighted that Virgin Holidays is the latest exciting brand to open a concession in our stores. Like Sainsbury’s colleagues, Virgin Holiday’s travel experts have a passion for great customer service so I have no doubt that these concessions will be a real hit with our customers over the coming months.”
Virgin Holidays currently has 77 retail outlets across the UK, which represents an increase of 50 per cent since this time last year. It plans to increase this by a further 53 stores by March 2012, and has recently also opened ‘stand alone’ limited - duration pop up shops in Dorking and Alton and. In the past 12 months, nearly 20,000 customers have booked using one of its shops.