Destinations editor Eric Moya spoke with Camilla Aluli, director of destination strategy and supplier engagement for the Mark Travel Corp., about the benefits of booking Hawaii through the company’s brands and what to look out for on the Islands in 2017.
Q: What are some of the advantages to agents in selling Hawaii through one of the Mark Travel brands?
A: We have excellent relationships with some of the best hotels, resorts and spas in the market, meaning that our agents can take advantage of exclusive benefits that provide them more profitability.
We sell Hawaii through Funjet Vacations, United Vacations and Blue Sky Tours. In fact, Blue Sky product is sold exclusively through agents. It is truly the one-stop shop to offer clients the ultimate Hawaii or South Pacific vacation, especially because agents can earn unlimited commission. And now agents can earn top commissions from their very first booking plus 3% commission on the air component of all packages.
Agents can also benefit from booking Hawaii with Funjet Vacations. Funjet also has two deposit-plan options to give clients flexible payment options. United Vacations has exclusive low airfares on vacations to Hawaii with United Airlines and the Best Price Guarantee on vacation packages.
Q: Could you talk about some ways in which Mark Travel has traditionally fostered its relationship with Hawaii suppliers and agents who sell Hawaii?
A: One of the best things about our relationships in Hawaii is that our hotels, activity providers and visitors bureaus offer extensive training, familiarization trips and in-market seminars to our agents. Because Hawaii is ever evolving, Mark Travel recognizes the importance of educating agents in order to most successfully sell packages to this market.
Q: Does Mark Travel have any new agent-education initiatives or incentives in the works?
A: Mark Travel recently launched Creative Connection. The tool provides on-demand access to a list of modifiable vacation-planning templates and offers agents the additional ability to customize a vacation recommendation branded with the travel agents’ information.
Q: What are some destinations, resorts or experiences that should be on agents’ radar in 2017?
A: The new Four Seasons Oahu at Ko Olina; the renovated Mailani Tower at the Royal Hawaiian; rebranding and enhancements of the Ali’i Tower at the Hilton Hawaiian Village. … Island Air is adding new aircraft to its fleet, providing expedient connections to the Neighbor Islands from Honolulu. And coming later this year, the new Alohilani Resort in Waikiki with a restaurant by Masaharu Morimoto.
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