Aloha State vacation packagers are ramping up their engagement with travel agents this fall and beyond, rolling out a variety of initiatives to help make selling Hawaii vacations easier as well as more enticing.
Classic Vacations recently revamped its website in an effort to help agents "stay abreast of new technology, help them build complex itineraries through new product offerings and give them specialized service for both FIT and group travel," according to a statement from the company.
The revamp enables agents "to provide relevant information and content to their clients in real time," according to Classic.
With the new Wanderlist feature, agents can customize itineraries and forward them to clients with the agency's own branding.
Classic Vacations also recently streamlined its selection of travel-protection plans.
Previously offering four Travel Smart plans as well as a change-and-cancellation waiver, the company is now focusing on three Travel Smart plans: the Classic plan, the Prestige plan and the Prestige Plus plan.
Features of the Classic plan include the ability to cancel for any reason (with at least 48 hours' notice before the scheduled departure), 24-hour customer support and the ability to access and update medical information online.
The Prestige plan differs from the Classic primarily in terms of benefit limits; for example, the Classic plan includes $250 in baggage-delay coverage, while the Prestige plan offers $500 in coverage.
The new Prestige Plus plan offers the same coverage as Prestige as well as up to 100% coverage for vacation components not booked through Classic Vacations, such as cruises.
For bookings made before Oct. 31, for travel between Jan. 3 and Dec. 22 next year, coverage for children will be included when their parents purchase the Classic TSP plan.
The Mark Travel Corp. recently unveiled Creative Connection, a free, online design tool enabling agents to create marketing materials with content related to the company's brands (Funjet Vacations, Southwest Vacations, United Vacations and Blue Sky Tours).
This fall, several Mark Travel brands are running Hawaii promotions. From Oct. 10 to 30, VAX VacationAccess will hold its Hawaii Campaign, with exclusive Hawaii offers and promotions as well as travel tips and itinerary ideas. Meanwhile, Blue Sky Tours is in the midst of its Travel Agent Appreciation Days effort, which ends Nov. 10. During that period, promotional offers will include free nights, discounts, value-added incentives and more.
Finally, United Vacations is offering discounts of up to 15% on select room categories at select Aqua-Aston properties, on reservations made through Nov. 10 for travel through June 30 (blackout dates apply).
This year, Pleasant Holidays added a status level to its Travel Reward Incentive Program. Agents with more than $250,000 in qualifying bookings in a year will be elevated to Premier Tier status for the following year, entitling them to apply points for air-only travel for international published air, redeem points for fam trip costs and more.
The wholesaler is also offering bonuses for groups and wedding bookings. For group bookings, agents can receive a bonus of $200 for 50 room nights, $450 for 100 room nights or $1,000 for 200 room nights or more.
For wedding bookings, agents will receive a bonus of $50 per guest for bookings at participating properties, which can be added to the agent's commission or gifted to the wedding couple's reservation.