Canadian Travel Press
Issue Date: Dec 14, 2020
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Encouraging signs of a recovery in early 2021

General Manager
Transat Distribution Canada

Last year, I began this by saying that in the world of tourism, certain unpredictable events sometimes take on overwhelming importance overnight and become inevitable.


Clearly, I would have preferred to be wrong … however since I am optimistic in nature, I prefer to believe that it is in adversity that one grows, that one evolves. I continue to believe that this crisis will allow the entire tourism industry to be even stronger in the months and years to come.

At this very moment in time, there are encouraging signs that a recovery may be in its infancy by early 2021.

As the largest travel agency network in Canada, TDC has taken advantage of this period of latency to reflect on the future of our different business models, whether it be our franchised agency network, our corporate agencies or our agent@home program.

A brand, new approach

The main element that emerges from this process is undoubtedly the value of the travel professional who, now more than ever, is best equipped to accompany the traveller through the hazards of this new reality.

TDC is proud to position itself as a leader on this issue with its most recent advertising campaign.

The interests of the traveller and especially the way in which the travel professional contributes to their experience, occupy a central place in it. With a travel professional, you are sure to “Get the vacation you really want.”

In this logic of reinforcing the positioning of the travel professional as the ultimate expert in the travel industry, TDC has undertaken a brand-new approach to the training of its advisors in relation to professional fees.

We therefore advocate that this should no longer be done on the basis of which fee is charged for which product but rather why we charge professional fees altogether. Highlight the “what’s in it for me” for the client and the added value he or she derives from it.

Thus, through our new approach, travellers are really able to see what services they receive in exchange for the dollars they pay us. We believe that this new approach will benefit our entire network, which has long advocated the importance of proper billing of professional fees.

Distribution, in the medium term

The last few months have forced us to question how best to reach travellers in a post-COVID-19 world. This reflection has been precipitated by events and was necessary for us as a network, as well as for each of our individual members.

This led us to review many elements of our agent@home program, an option that has proved to be of interest for some owners who would like to remain within our network, either to apply it to their own business, or those who, for a host of reasons, prefer to focus on selling travel and want to lighten their management responsibilities.

Travel is here to stay

As mentioned earlier, I am an optimist, but I am also lucid and realistic. Of course, certain criteria will have to be in place before people start travelling on a larger scale again, such as reviewing the quarantine requirements.

Once this is in place, a significant number of Canadians will prioritize travel over other expenses because they will need the escape that only travel can provide.

All members of the TDC network will be best equipped to guide them in getting the vacation they really want.