Shane Nelson
Shane Nelson

InsightHawaii wholesaler Blue Sky Tours debuted its Mahalo Money loyalty program, offering registered travel agents a cash bonus for each booking they make with the company.

Bonuses will be deposited, following the client’s departure, on a Visa prepaid debit card in bimonthly payouts.

“They can use it anywhere Visa is accepted or just withdraw the money at an ATM,” explained Blue Sky Tours’ vice president, Rob Betz. “For some of our key loyal agencies, it’s going to add up very quickly. I look at the math with some of our partners, and people are going to have some serious money on their cards.”

According to Bertz, the average booking will earn agents around $5, but the cash reward is based on a percentage of each booking’s land-based sales, including car rentals, hotels, activities and attractions and even insurance. Blue Sky will also feature short-term tactical promotions with its Hawaii partners that last between two and six weeks, enabling agents to earn more money and take advantage of exclusive offers.

“Through the end of March, we’re going to be working with Hyatt, and qualifying bookings with them will earn agents an extra twenty-five bucks loaded onto that card,” Betz added.

Blue Sky Tours, which sells only Hawaii products exclusively through travel agents, is a subsidiary of Mark Travel and has launched its Mahalo Money program in conjunction with the corporation’s flagship brand, Funjet Vacations.

“We kind of joined forces and said, ‘How can we make this even more valuable,’” Betz said. “So now if agents book to Hawaii, they can earn money through Blue Sky Tours, but then when those agents want to book Mexico, Caribbean, Las Vegas, they can go with our sister brand, Funjet Vacations, and just keep adding to their totals.”

Betz was also upbeat about Blue Sky’s business to Hawaii in 2012, forecasting the company would see single-digit year-over-year growth.

“I think our growth expectations are probably similar to some of the HTA [Hawaii Tourism Authority] stats that I’ve been seeing,” he said. “But we’ve got to be pushing the outer islands. When you start approaching that 8 million passenger mark, you’re putting a lot of pressure on Waikiki. If we can get them out to some of the outer islands, I think that’s were we are going to start seeing the real growth.”

To learn more about Blue Sky’s Mahalo Money program, visit
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