Just like cruising, travellers unpack once, they receive a full itinerary, they take part in day excursions, they explore different destinations and they’re treated to carefully created dishes.

Great Rail journeys are essentially the land-derivative of cruising and just like the sailing sector, sales are picking up speed. Quickly.

Speaking at the inaugural Great Rail Journeys Showcase in Sydney last night, Rail Plus’ Ingrid Kocijan said Aussies have a growing case of tunnel vision for this trending style of travel, as it meets their desire “to do something different with their holiday”.

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She said during the first eight months of this year, Great Rail Journeys sales have increased by 20 percent compared to the same period in 2017, indicated that there’s “real opportunity” for Travel Agents to jump onboard and make more money.

If you’re unfamiliar with the concept of Great Rail Journeys, they’re held on gorgeous pieces of machinery that should never be compared to the likes of Australia’s metro trains.

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They range from 5-star sleepers like Belmond’s Andean Explorer to adventure vehicles similar to the Rocky Mountaineer and, in most cases, they provide travellers with spacious sleeping quarters, social hubs, observatory areas and onboard entertainment.

With such comfort and luxury on the tracks, it’s no wonder upmarket Aussies have chugged on over towards Great Rail Journeys.

“It’s perfect for people who love to cruise because it has a similar idea.”

Ingrid Kocijan, Rail Plus Commercial Director Australia & New Zealand

Kocijan said that this growing interest in Great Rail Journeys is good news for Travel Agents, because most bookings come through trade professionals.

She explained that currently the B2C is very small and the majority of travellers want “to go to a Travel Agent and book through them”.

If growing public interest isn’t enough to convince consultants to study up on Great Train Journeys, then how about commission levels, which are higher than other rail products.

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To help consultants sell (and make money), Rail Plus has launched its first ever online training program dedicated to Great Train Journeys.

Open to all qualified Australian Travel Agents, the program is made up of eight themed-modules covering Rocky Mountaineer, VIA Rail, Grand Train Tour of Switzerland, Great Southern Rail, The Great Journeys of New Zealand, Belmond & India, The Americas and The rest of the world.

At the end of each module, consultants will be presented with 10 randomly selected questions, which must be answered – along with a simple creative query – before midday on 6 October 2017.

Every Agent who receives a 60 percent pass rate will graduate and receive an e-certificate as a Great Rail Journeys Expert. The top graduate from the inaugural program will receive a $500 VISA Gift card, with prizes also allocated for second- ($250 VISA Gift card) and third-placed ($150 VISA Gift card) finishers. In addition, the top achiever for each modules will win a Kobo e-reader.

Does this make you want to get back on track with your Great Rail Journeys knowledge?