Flight Centre Independent agents from nearly every province will again convene in Toronto on April 13 and April 14 for FCIs Annual Cross-Canada Meetup – an event designed to bring agents together to network with each other and industry partners as well as involve agents in the decision-making and plans for the business.
FCI general manager, Lee Zanello noted that: “We are always evolving this business, and we dont do that without involving our agents. Involve to evolve; its a simple premise that has been working for us for 10 years now. We listen to our agents, get inspired by their vision and then implement the plans and tools needed to help make them successful.
This year’s Meetup will feature the launch of new booking tools, new marketing and social media initiatives and a new fee model that gives the agents the ability to customize and better control their program expenses.
The weekend will also feature the inaugural Independent Partner Appreciation Awards where supplier partners chosen by FCI agents will be recognized for their work.
Our partners are extremely important to us at FCI, Zanello observed. With Flight Centres Preferred Partnerships, not just in Canada but globally, we know they help us offer our agents the most extensive and supportive network in the country. I cannot wait to show our appreciation for all that they do with these upcoming awards.
As FCI turns 10 Years Strong this month, the weekend will also be notable for celebrating the January launch of a sister brand in the US, Independent by Liberty Travel.
“Independent by Liberty Travel has exceeded all of our initial expectations in the first few months, said Flight Centre vice-president for the independent agent brands in North America, Cameron McLeod.
There is a fantastic camaraderie between our Canadian and US businesses with Canada guiding the way with their 10 years of experience and the US able to contribute heavily with strong supplier relations and technology and systems innovations. Its a fantastic time for Independent Agents to come on board with the company on both sides of the border, McLeod continued.
The event will take place at Flight Centres flagship Travel Centre in downtown Toronto at the corner of King and Spadina, the first of its kind in Flight Centre globally to feature its own event space.
Flight Centre has three distinct Independent offerings working with individual Independent contractors, small agencies who appreciate the backend support and earning potential offered by a Global brand, and partners who have unique and specific requirements from a host agency.
Said Zanello: “Our size and strength in the Canadian travel industry gives us the resources to work directly with each agent or agency on an individual basis. We aren’t cookie-cutter and we work hard to ensure we have a host solution that is flexible enough to fit pretty much any arrangement.
Zanello added: Put that together with a company culture that doesn’t take itself too seriously and you get opportunities like this that help people realize they are not just a part of our business, they are a part of our family.