So the summer season has now come to an end and it’s been quite a turbulent year for the travel industry with some clear winners and losers. Brexit, terror threats and the weakening pound have all had significant impact on travel in 2016. Our biggest market, Turkey, certainly suffered from all the negative press since December last year and as a direct result the mass market was reported to be down as much as 40%. A good report by lee Jackson of Wex Travel Payments sums up the industry trends: http://www.wexinc.com/wex-travel/post-brexit-confidence-remains-the-key-to-success-in-the-travel-industry/
Specialist operators like Discerning Collection were not immune to this trend but, despite the negative news reports and the attempted coup, we were only down 12% on bookings to Turkey this summer. This was only achieved by the loyalty of our guests and the fact that many of our guests know that the resorts we feature, like Kalkan and Kas, are far removed from the potential threat of terrorism. Indeed, during the season, all our resorts were fairly oblivious to the goings on in other parts of Turkey. Spain was a clear winner, despite the weakening pound.
We have over the years tried to differentiate of product and have introduced new destinations like Montenegro and Croatia, Luxury crewed yachting in Corfu and more properties in Crete and Mallorca in order to give our loyal guests more of a choice in these uncertain times. Thankfully the introduction of these new destinations somewhat made up for the reduction in sales to Turkey. But we cannot stop there so for Winter 2016/17 we are also looking to introduce a small ski programme to offer our guests some winter holidays and hopefully this will come on board in December 2016. Please keep a look out for our e-shots and also the website.
So a big thank you to all our guests who travelled with us in 2016 and also a big welcome to all those Elixir guests who managed to travel with us this summer. According to our review site, Feefo, we seem to be getting things right with a 98% high on customer feedback feefo , but in times like this it’s important to remember that we have to try even harder to keep our loyal guests happy and we all at Discerning Collection will endeavour to do just that for the coming season.