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Published on Tuesday, November 12, 2019

Hays Travel holds first conference since Thomas Cook acquisition

John Hays with some of the group's retail managers

Hays Travel chair Irene Hays has thanked Jet2 and Rixos Hotels for hurriedly organising more flights and hotel rooms to enable its new recruits from Thomas Cook to attend its 30th annual retail managers' conference in Turkey.

Four specially chartered Jet2 planes flew more than 700 branch managers from Manchester, Newcastle and Stansted airports this morning, just a month after Hays bought Thomas Cook's retail network.

The acquisition trebled the number of Hays Travel shops and swelled its payroll to more than 4,000.

So far, Hays has reopened 450 of Thomas Cook's 555 shops and taken on 2,000 of its staff.

As a result, its annual conference, taking place in Antalya this week, is three times bigger than previously.

Twice the number of planes and hotels were needed to accommodate everyone.

Irene Hays said: "We always make sure our managers have fun at the conference as they get together from all over the country. They pack in three full days with some fantastic speakers and workshops and they end up with a unique insight into the latest developments in the travel industry, and masses of information to take back to their branches.

"This year, we will have the added bonus of getting to know our new colleagues. We'll also take the chance to recognise and celebrate all the hard work everyone has put in this year, and to thank those from Thomas Cook who joined so quickly and moved mountains to help us get their shops back up and running.

"And we'd also like to thank Jet2 and Rixos Hotels who came to the rescue just four weeks ago when all the plans had to be upscaled, as well as Newcastle, Manchester and Stansted airports, for the outstanding welcome they've given us."

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