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Published on Friday, May 29, 2020

Kuoni to sell UK holidays to offset drop in long-haul sales

Kuoni has launched a range of bespoke domestic holidays in Scotland, England, Wales and Ireland in partnership with Glasgow-based operator McKinlay Kidd.

It hopes the move will broaden its appeal and offset a significant downturn in demand for long-haul trips.

Under the agreement, McKinlay Kidd, an AITO member, will sell its tailor made product through Kuoni and will pay Kuoni a commission for holidays sold.

"We've been looking at the UK and Ireland for a few years now and considering the best approach, but the coronavirus crisis has accelerated this and we've moved quickly to bring this together in a way which we think is best suited to our customers," said a Kuoni spokeswoman.

She said Claire Ross, Kuoni's head of specialist product, has worked on bringing the partnership together with the help of her team.

"We've trained our virtual call centre team but creating the itineraries to match the brief will be handled by McKinlay Kidd," she added.

Kuoni already has similar agreements in place with other third parties, including Ski Independence.

Customers who have had to cancel their overseas trips due to the coronavirus are now able to rebook one of the new domestic trips.

"All the trips are bespoke and will be available to book as soon as it's safe to travel and destinations, hotels and islands have opened up once lockdown is eased," said the spokeswoman.

"We certainly hope that people will be able to book and travel later this summer but will work closely with McKinlay Kidd on re-open dates."

A new UK section of the company's website will go live today (Friday), featuring a range of hand-picked itineraries.

Trips include the Causeway Coast in Northern Ireland, Scotland's islands, including Orkney, Shetland and the Outer Hebrides, Ireland's Wild Atlantic Way, the Gower Peninsula in Wales, the Isles of Scilly, and Devon and Cornwall road trips.

Kuoni CEO Derek Jones said: "The coronavirus crisis has played havoc with people's travel plans so we wanted to create a collection of quality, premium trips throughout the UK and Ireland which blend local culture, adventure and exploration with luxury style."

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