G Adventures has confirmed to KarryOn that Flight Centre in Australia has removed the adventure company from its ‘preferred status’.
The tour operator was officially removed on 1 July this year.
Belinda Ward, G Adventures Australia and NZ MD, confirmed the change to KarryOn yesterday, saying the company ‘will no longer enjoy preferred status with Flight Centre in Australia’.
The decision does not completely stop Flight Centre agents from selling G Adventures products, however, as a non-preferred company agents will not be incentivised to promote and push its itineraries to clients.
A Flight Centre spokesperson told KarryOn in an email that while Flight Centre sees G Adventures as a ‘good company with a good product’, the company is now focusing on a single preferred partner in this space.
The single preferred partner being the Intrepid Group, incorporating Intrepid Travel, Peregrine Adventures, Geckos Adventures, Adventure Tours Australia, Urban Adventures, The Family Adventure Company. Intrepid Travel today took back full ownership of the original adventure travel brand today. Read on
“A few months ago, we decided to focus on a single preferred partner in this space.”
Flight Centre spokesperson
Despite losing one of Australia’s biggest agency groups, Ward told KarryOn that G Adventures will continue to sell in the Australian market by further building on existing strong relationships with other trade partners.
Australia is the company’s third largest outbound market, with double-digit growth, both globally and in Australia, since its inception in 1990.
2015 has so far been the company’s most successful year, a success Ward attributes to all its partners in the large Australian agency network.
She said that the business model in Australia will see the company remain focused on working with the best agents in the industry.
This includes teaming up with them for ongoing training and initiatives such as the company’s micro-famils – unique agent training.
“We believe this commitment to award-winning service will see us continue to grow in this market.”
Belinda Ward, G Adventures Australia & NZ MD
“As with any entrepreneurial company, our growth rates are always ambitious,” she said.
“Our success in the Australian market is the result of great partnerships, innovation and a commitment to lead with service – all of which will ensure our continued growth in this market.”
Ward added that the company would continue to invest in marketing and innovative product development to build the G Adventures brand in Australia throughout 2015.
This will include hosting more micro-famils, which sees G Adventures fly its ‘Chief Experience Officers’ (expert tour guides) to Australia to visit agents in-store.
During their visit they share their first-hand stories and give consultants the opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of the destination.
G Adventures says the micro-famils are contributing to an increase in sales in the local market.
For example, a recent visit from the Peruvian team saw South American itineraries increase by 57 percent year-on-year, while Peru specifically jumped 67 percent. Read on
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