The leaders discussed expansion goals for tourism and hospitality in the UK, lessons learned from global competitors, how the public sector could help stimulate growth and productivity in the tourism marketplace, key products and services that attract visitors to the UK, policy recommendations and concerns about the impact of the UK leaving the European Union.
The meeting was hosted by Michael Ellis, MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for the Arts, Heritage and Tourism; William Vereker, Prime Minister’s Business Envoy; and Niamh Mulholland, Business Engagement Manager at Prime Minister’s Office, along with more than a dozen industry leaders from the private sector.
“The UK government is committed to expanding tourism more widely across the country and is looking to work with the tourism sector to increase both domestic and international visitor numbers,” said Chacko. “Travel Leaders Group is excited about working with the UK government on its efforts to expand tourism beyond London. We see great potential in offering curated experiences to less-traveled destinations within the UK.”
Travel Leaders Group, one of the largest travel agency companies in North America and the largest seller of luxury travel, employs more than 1,100 tourism professionals in the UK and drives a significant amount of inbound and outbound corporate, leisure and entertainment travel.
“The British government is interested in working with the private sector to boost English and UK tourism, to ensure the tourism industry is productive and internationally competitive and that tourism continues to grow as the country navigates through Brexit,” Chacko said. He also discussed Travel Leaders Group’s involvement in many different segments of the tourism market and he supports efforts to bring new entrants into the industry, such as one program at Barrhead Travel that puts more than 70 young adults annually through a two-year training course with a blend of vocational and classroom learning, resulting in permanent employment at its completion.
Travel and tourism supported 4.1 million jobs in the UK in 2017 and accounts for 10.5 percent of GDP, higher than that of banking and agricultural sectors.
As part of the World Travel Market (WTM) conference, Chacko participated in a World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) panel featuring global industry leaders, entitled ‘Social Contract: Expired’, which focused on travel and tourism’s role in rebuilding faith and continuing to drive growth, integration and prosperity amidst a resurgence of isolationism. The panel, led by CBS News’ Peter Greenberg, included tourism ministers from Greece, Bulgaria, Ras-al-Khaimah and Egypt, as well as Gloria Guevara, President and CEO of WTTC.
“Travel and tourism has rolled out the strongest welcome mat all over the world,” said Chacko. He urged tourism leaders to continue to send positive messages to the world’s travelers. “We cannot control negative rhetoric that may be part of the political discourse. What we can control is the content and messages that are put into the marketplace. We all need to double down on the positive side and leave no space for the negative impressions.”
Travel Leaders Group has a strong and growing presence in the UK market with a collection of prestigious travel brands, including Protravel International, Tzell Travel Group, ALTOUR, Barrhead Travel Group, Colletts Travel and Scotia Travel. Travel Leaders Group ranked eighth in Buying Business Travel’s ranking of top travel management firms.
Travel Leaders Group assists millions of travelers through its leisure, business and network travel operations under a variety of diversified divisions and brands including All Aboard Travel, Andrew Harper Travel, Colletts Travel, Corporate Travel Services, CruCon Cruise Outlet, Cruise Specialists, Nexion, Protravel International, SinglesCruise.com, Travel Leaders Corporate, Travel Leaders Network and Tzell Travel Group, and its merger with ALTOUR.
Photo Caption: Members of the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) met with UK tourism leaders in the Pillared Drawing Room at 10 Downing Street to discuss how tourism can be used to continue to drive investment and job creation. Travel Leaders Group CEO Ninan Chacko was part of the delegation of more than a dozen global private sector travel leaders.
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About Travel Leaders Group
Travel Leaders Group (www.travelleadersgroup.com) is transforming travel with a commitment to our vacation and business travel clients via our progressive approach toward each unique travel experience. Having already assisted millions of travelers, Travel Leaders Group manages leisure, business and franchise travel operations under a variety of diversified divisions and brands. Travel Leaders Group ranks as one of the industry’s largest retail travel agency companies.
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