Published on Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Travel Republic hits out at press coverage over recent failures

Online travel agent Travel Republic has accused the trade and national press of trying to "whip up a storm of anxiety" over recent travel company failures.

Managing director Kane Pirie said the facts don't support the coverage, because there are many travel businesses doing well.

"We are on track for a record breaking year with over £300m of turnover. Trading in July and August has been particularly strong," he said.

“The perennial truth is, people love going on holiday and there are many strong and thriving businesses doing really well.”

He accused the press of publishing "scare stories" after the collapse of Kiss flights last week and the release of trading results from the larger tour operators disclosing the impact of the ash cloud crisis.

* Do you think Pirie is right about the press coverage? Email us your views by clicking on ADD A COMMENT below.

By Bev Fearis

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  • Old Guard scare scaremongering

    Well, where do I start once again? Kane Pirie is absolutely correct and Traveltek has the transactional growth figures to prove it. Of course businesses fail each and every day but that's nothing to do with dynamic packaging but more to do with inadequate management experience and understanding of the correct margin required to run their businesses and of course, it could be argued lady luck plays a part but I would disagree there also. Quite simply, you get out of life what you put in and at Traveltek we have plenty of live examples of very successful businesses both large and small who are trading both in DP and trading very well and on decent double digit margins. Some of these clients are amongst the biggest names in our industry so for me the scaremongering is just poor journalism focusing on headlines not fact or detail which appears to satisfy the old guard CAA, ABTA and others who refuse to accept that despite everything, consumers now demand and expect the right to access this type of (DP) holiday both in terms of price and freedom of choice. I think the trade has to get real, modernise and get with it sooner rather than later or face joining the countless others who have already failed, some brave, some naive. Consumers need some protection, no doubt but they want that to compliment the dynamic world in which we all now reside. I think its called insurance!

    By Kenny Picken, Monday, April 8, 2019

  • I think the penny dropped

    Yes Richard, actually the public do. hence the massive year on year increase in same and also why the big two, keep investing in this aspect of travel.

    By Kenny Picken, Monday, April 8, 2019

  • If I understand...

    ...Tayyar Cengiz's shout correctly, he is suggesting that the larger holiday operators are deliberately manipulating the press in order to try to gain commercial advantage. If my assumption is correct, does he have some facts to prove his assertion?

    By Richard English, Wednesday, September 1, 2010

  • Consumer Protection

    I think it is about time the travel industry stood side by side and offered protection for consumers we DP Holidays/Cruises and we are ATOL Bonded which means if anything happens, Ash Cloud, Strikes, Airline or Accomodation failures we ensure our customers do not loose out or have to pay again, yes this comes at a cost but is a few pounds per person. Companies like travel republic, on the beach sell packages but think it is justified to sell different transactions so if anything happens it is the customer who has to fork out again, again and again for some Ex Goldtrail Customers. These companies are the ones that have greyed the area of protection & trust for consumers, I mean one company with the collape of Kiss their attitude if a customer had booked a Flight & Accomodation was your accomodation can not be cncelled without charges & you have to pay out for flights again and claim from ABTA, the collapse of Goldtrail with ourselves we rebooked our clients holidays and we are claiming the costs back from ATOL, just like we did with XL/Globespan and will continue to do so, so it is not just the Big Companies claiming they are better it is the companies that protect there customers that will survive this downturn. I mean it was us and couple of tour operators that organised to repatriate customers on a 5* Cruise ship what did these other companies do? Left customers stranded & to fend for themselves. Why do travel republic/on the beach & other such companies shun their responsibility ? because when the going gets tough they can not hack it. If you are selling Insurance, Fitting Boilers, Building Houises you have to be certified registered & bonded incase of problems and every travel company in the UK should be bonded & offer consumers protection automatically. Do these companies explain on every call if anything goes wrong it is the consumers responsibility I think not, it ius not till something happens that consumers are now realising paying a couple of £'s extra in the beginning means I am in the hands of a compnay that cares for me, not just my money. Why will Travel Republic/On The Beach not do the decent thing and protect their customers???? Why should the customer have to hope or buy something extra that covers them? I do thisa as a matter of course all my customers are protected and that is why business has seen an increase of 48 Year on Year Growth. As we all say Book with a name & company you trust. The sooner we get to a point where to trade in the travel industry you have to bonded as if you can't afford or it don't want to then don't set up, as you are giving the rest of us Travel Proffessionals a bad name... Simples....

    By Martin Owens, Wednesday, August 25, 2010

  • margins the problem

    I am pleased to learn Travelrepublic has seen increased business but the fact remains that the economic downturn combined with the BA strikes and the ash cloud in particular has seriously dented cash reserves. Unfortunately, turnover means nothing if you are not making a profit or have sufficient cash reserves to overcome a down turn. I have been involved in airport parking for over 20 years through and seen loads of new operators come and go offering unbelievable prices. Is all these firms do is just make it harder until they fail because their margins are unsustainable. Its called overtrading, while the turnover keeps going up it covers over the cracks

    By david cook, Wednesday, August 25, 2010



    By tayyar cengiz, Wednesday, August 25, 2010

  • Erratum

    It occurred to me that Mr Pirie might not have said that people love going on holiday. That may have been a misquote and, while only a guess, perhaps he actually said that people love taking flights and also enjoy unrelated hotel stays in the same destination. Glad that's cleared up.

    By Richard Lyons, Wednesday, August 25, 2010

  • Bad news sells newspapers

    I think Mr Pirie is correct as the press love nothing more that showing pictures of stranded travellers and tales of woe. While regrettable, these represent a tiny percentage of customers that our industry has successfully sent on holiday this year. Considering the travel business is complicated, subject to many uncontrollable factors and operates on narrow margins, it is easy to lose site of what a professional job the majority of us do.

    By Guy Novik - USAirtours, Tuesday, August 24, 2010

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