//Advantage reveals plans at Conference
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Advantage reveals plans at Conference

Consortia reveals key plans at 2019 event in Spain. By Sam Ballard.

Advantage Travel Partnership has announced a number of new initiatives at its 2019 Conference.

Regional communities, apprenticeship programmes and re-packaged cruise and air fares were among the new plans revealed at the 2019 event in Cadiz. The consortia also announced that it would be running a census with its members.

Regional Communities

The regional community initiative will launch in Autumn with the aim of offering a more personalised service to Advantage Members. The communities will take the form of monthly conference calls hosted by local business development managers and suppliers; webinars; in-person training; and dinners. There will also be new Facebook pages set up and a Buddy System to ensure new Advantage members are able to realise all of the benefits of membership.

Paula Lacey, Advantage Travel Partnership’s commercial director, said: “As a membership organisation we understand the need for members to feel they are part of something special and have the opportunity to create relationships with not only the centre but other businesses in their area to discuss local issues/challenges and share knowledge with people who may be experiencing the same challenges and by working closer in those communities we can get even closer to the members and a deeper understanding at head office. This also gives members even more access to head office staff and suppliers.”

Re-packaged cruise and air fares

Advantage Holidays, the consortia’s tour operator service, is to launch repackaged fares with its cruise and airline partners in Autumn. The new fares will be be supported by technology which allows members to customise ocean cruises with flights and accommodation. In 2020 luxury and river fares will be added.

Lacey added: “We are very excited to expand our current offering to members, giving them the opportunity to sell repackaged cruises to their customers at a competitive prices. The regional departures and flexible durations provide growth opportunities for our members by offering them an edge of competitiveness in this business environment.”

Apprenticeship scheme

Advantage has partnered with Travilearn and TrainingStation to offer both its business and leisure members a solution for apprenticeships.

The new offering provides members with the tools to attract apprenticeships including one-on-one coaching through classroom teaching and self-study online learning modules. The scheme will offer two qualifications: Travel Consultant Standard (in partnership with TrainingStation) and Pathway to Business Travel Professional (in partnership with Travilearn).

Neil Armorgie, global product director at Advantage said; “This initiative is the first of its kind in business travel and follows membership demand for quality staff and training. The solution with Travilearn will allow a tailored approach that will suit our members’ needs. This follows on perfectly from the e-learning solutions we launched in November 2018.”

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Sam Ballard is a director and co-founder of Waterfront Publishing, creator of ABTA Magazine, Cruise Adviser, Solus and more.