Virgin Holidays to deploy Amadeus technology

Virgin Holidays has announced that it will deploy technology from Amadeus to enhance fares and shopping services for holiday customers.

Amadeus is a travel technology partner and transaction processor for the global travel and tourism industry. Together with Virgin Holidays, it will offer services cemented by broad-ranging technology partnerships between the two firms. As part of the agreement, Virgin Holidays will migrate its online and call centre reservations to Amadeus. It will also introduce new fares and shopping solutions to boost sales conversions. A feature of the partnership will be what the companies call, best fare ‘findability and bookability.’

The system migration, which was completed in October, was the first phase of the technology agreement. The two companies are also planning to work to streamline data across multiple systems and to improve processes through increased automation.

Wayne Perks, product & commercial director at Virgin Holidays, said, ‘As a hugely popular brand with the travelling public, we wanted to ensure that the Virgin flair, which is so evident throughout our customers’ holiday experiences, is present in the trip planning and shopping stages. The only way to make this happen is by using best-in-class technology. Our aim is to make the pre-departure shopping and booking an enjoyable and stress-free precursor to enjoying the actual holiday. That’s why we are working with Amadeus to ensure that our customers will always be able to access the best fares on offer, and they will be able to do this effortlessly thanks to the advanced new technology we are installing.’

 

Virgin Holidays Offers Discounts to UK Emergency Services and Ministry of Defence Employees

Virgin Holidays, a UK-based holiday company and part of the Virgin Group, is offering discounts to UK Emergency Services and Ministry of Defence employees as a thank you for their part in ensuring a smooth Olympic Games 2012, which concluded in London last night.

The company acknowledged the selfless work put in by the Police, NHS, Fire & Rescue, Coastguard, Mountain Rescue and the Ministry of Defence during the period, and is offering them a 10 percent discount on all Virgin Holidays or Virgin Holidays Cruise bookings made by today.

The discount is on offer on all holidays departing between September 1, 2012, and February 28 2013; and on all Virgin Holidays Cruises priced more than GBP1,000 per person.

Earlier Virgin Atlantic, an airline subsidiary of UK-based Virgin Group and a sister company of Virgin Holidays, reported a GBP80.2 million loss for its most recent financial year, which ended February 2012. This is in sharp comparison with an operating profit of GBP18.5 million reported during the earlier year.

The airline, has, however, reported an increase in airline revenue and passenger numbers from March 2012 to the end of May 2012, compared to the same period in 2011.

Virgin Atlantic chief executive officer, Steve Ridgway, said, ‘In an incredibly challenging market, we have managed to grow top-line revenues and fly more customers than last year.

However, with the prevailing uncertainty in the economy, sky-high fuel prices and a 25 per cent hike in our air passenger duty fees, converting this sales growth into profit has not been possible.

Despite this backdrop there can be no let up so to keep Virgin Atlantic at the forefront of airline customer innovation we have announced our biggest ever service and cabin investment programme.’

Wet April Boosts Overseas Holiday Bookings

Virgin Holidays, the UK-based holiday company, has reported a rise in holiday bookings following the persistent rain that drenched the UK for much of April.

April has officially entered the record books as the wettest in the UK in 100 years, causing British citizens to fear for what the coming summer might bring and book overseas holidays in the hope of guaranteeing better weather. The company has reported a 55 percent increase in April vacation bookings in 2012, compared to the same period in 2011.

April 29, 2012 was the wettest day of the month, and that was the day when the company recorded its maximum enquiry level for overseas vacations, mostly for destinations in the Caribbean and in Florida, US.

Happy with the surge in holiday bookings, the company is planning to launch a new ‘Downpour Discount’ for people booking holidays on the wettest days of the months ahead.

Amanda Wills, the managing director of Virgin Holidays, said, ‘This ongoing poor weather is no joke for those affected by flooding so we’re looking at various rainy day discounts initiatives to give them something to look forward to. It’s a simple equation – the more it rains here, the more money you could save on a holiday to get away from it. The increase in demand across all of our channels tells us that consumers are desperate to find some sun. There are some fantastic bargains to be had and the surging value of the pound means that their hard-earned cash goes further once they get there.

After the wettest April in a century, and numerous predictions for an overcrowded, washout summer, it’s hard to blame them for turning their back on the staycation.’

Virgin Holidays Opens New Store in Addlestone, Surrey

Virgin Holidays has announced the opening of a new store at Addlestone, in Surrey, England.

The new store is located in the Tesco Extra shop in Addlestone, providing local residents the opportunity of experiencing the brand’s signature holiday offerings. The store can advise on the brand’s products and holiday experiences as well as offering the advice of holiday experts for customisable holiday packages to many destinations around the world.

Each of the Birgin Holiday stores has dedicated areas for the type of holiday required, like Virgin Holidays Cruises and Virgin Holidays+HIP Hotels options, as well as an exclusive Virgin Holiday v-room and Concierge lounges, and the Virgin Holidays Rockstar Service.

Some of the current holiday offers include four nights in Miami, US, for prices commencing from £699 per person; three nights in Dubai from £539 per person; and a summer escape to Barbados, which the company’s travel experts have cited as the favourite holiday destination for visitors to the store in Addlestone.

The company also has stores located in Debenhams, House of Fraser, and Sainsbury, in the UK, offering customisable holidays to the USA, Caribbean, Africa, the Middle and Far East, as well as to the Indian Ocean and Australasia.

Virgin Holidays is a part of UK-based travel company, Virgin Group, headquartered in Crawley, West Sussex. The company began its operations by selling air flights on Virgin Atlantic airline routes to New York, Miami and Orlando, in US, before attaining its current status as an international scheduled tour operator in the UK.

Beach Wheelchairs now offered at holiday resorts

Virgin Holidays is delighted to announce a new complimentary service for their customers – beach wheelchairs. Available in selected hotels in Antigua, Barbados and St Lucia, these specially designed chairs allow customers who have walking difficulties or are wheelchair user’s, easy access onto the beach and into the ocean. These tricked-out chairs come complete with extra chunky beach-friendly wheels, sunshades and storage for beach essentials.

 

Virgin Holidays employee Nicola Davis, herself a wheelchair user, came up with the idea after visiting the Caribbean on holiday. “I have used beach wheelchairs in Florida for many years and then I travelled to the Caribbean and found out that none of the hotels offered them. I really missed being able to spend time on the beach with my children and realised that many people were missing out on one of the most important parts of a Caribbean holiday.” The chairs were developed in partnership with Aqua Creek Products and have been getting rave reviews from the first customers that have used them, giving a liberating freedom to move around the beautiful Caribbean beaches with ease.

 

The beach wheelchairs are available to Virgin Holidays guests at the Almond Beach Village, Almond Casuarina and Almond Beach Club in Barbados, St Lucian by Rex, St Lucia and the Jolly Beach in Antigua, and are pre-bookable through the Virgin Holidays Special Assistance Team.

 

Virgin Holidays award winning Special Assistance team offers a dedicated service for disabled and limited mobility customers. Brochures highlight accommodation which is best suited for wheelchair access and those with reduced mobility can book accessible transfers, adapted vehicle hire and medical equipment hire. The team also provides theme park and excursions accessibility information to help customers plan ahead.

 

Call us on 0844 557 3998 or email special.assistance@virginholidays.com to find out more.