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Published on Wednesday, January 27, 2021

Travel agency franchises see growth despite travel grinding to a halt


Working-from-home travel agency franchises say they're seeing rising numbers of new recruits, despite the pandemic bringing leisure travel to a standstill.

Inteletravel says its membership has grown from 7,481 UK agents this time last year to 10,707. Even since September, when the Government began reintroducing travel restrictions, a further 151 UK agents have signed up.

Over the past year, the average value of each booking is also up considerably from £834 to £1,710, says Inteletravel.

"People have been attracted by the low cost of entry, the opportunity to run their own business, a chance to change their lifestyle and work at home, the opportunity to gain an additional income, and a new start after losing their jobs and seeing a downturn during the pandemic," said a spokesperson.

"We know hundreds of agents have joined us from other travel businesses and that people have joined from many different industries.

"For example, one of our successful recent agents ran a recruitment business, saw a downturn when the pandemic hit and joined to gain an alternative income source."

says it has seen about a 10% increase in membership to around 100 homeworkers over the past 12 months, with three-quarters joining from high street agencies.

While a few have left the franchise, Director Charles Duncombe said this was mainly because 'they realised that homeworking wasn't for them' rather due to the pandemic, but he admitted that 10% to 15% of the remainder might be 'in hibernation'.

Average income is down around 50% year on year, he said, but added that 2021 has got off to a good start and average earnings should return to pre-pandemic levels.

Travel Counsellors, one of the longest established travel agency franchises, says 140 business owners have joined since the start of the pandemic. It says those leaving have remained at pre-pandemic levels of around 9%.

A spokesperson said the company couldn't give a figure for the number of agents still actively taking bookings, but its Welfare Fund has been drawn on by 150 business owners who are experiencing financial hardship.

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  • Inteletravel Stats?

    Take it their numbers are Global and not UK and also how many have joined and left in the UK from Inteletravel - looks like overinflated figures again. You see Holidaysplease and Travel Counsellors etc giving measured credible responses and a thorough recruitment process to ensure a good and mutual benefit fit.

    By Chris Oakes, Thursday, January 28, 2021

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