Playa Hotels and Resorts recently wrapped up its Travel Agent Workshop series across Western Canada, visiting travel advisors in six cities: Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Red Deer, Vancouver, and Victoria.
Freddie Marsh, business development manager for Western Canada, said his team was “blown away” by the attendance at the workshops.
“In fact, registrations far exceeded our expectations and we had to scramble for larger venue spaces – a great problem to have,” Marsh said. “It’s obvious that there is a big demand for product knowledge, and to connect in a personal and meaningful way. For many travel agents, this was their fist in-person event in more than two years.”
The workshops were an opportunity for Playa Resorts to update Western Canadian travel agents on all the various brands of all-inclusive resorts under the Playa umbrella and to also provide product updates.
Playa is a growing company and it has several new all-inclusive resorts in the market, such as Yucatan Resort Tapestry Collection by Hilton, Hyatt Ziva Riviera Cancun and Hyatt Zilara Riviera Maya debuting in December 2022 and the rebranding of the Wyndham Alltra all-inclusive resorts in late 2021.
The workshops were a perfect opportunity to unveil Playa’s three pillars of hospitality: Wellness, Entertainment and Food & Beverage, which are areas that Playa is focused on to deliver its outstanding guest experiences.
Rose Cosentino, Playa Resorts’ vice-president of sales for Canada and EURASIA, attended the Vancouver and Victoria workshops.
“Being able to engage, educate and energize with our travel partners in person felt incredible,” Cosentino said. “We had some of our tour operator sales team participate in these workshops which further supports the long-standing relationship we have with travel community and overdue need to have these events in person.”
Cosentino advised agents to “stay tuned” Playa’s Eastern Canada and Quebec events that will take place in September and October lead by Amanda Morris, director of sales and Christian Roussin, business development manager for Quebec and Atlantic Canada.
Report your bookings!
“Don’t forget to report your bookings!” is a phrase Western Canada travel advisors are used to hearing, “and it’s never been more important than now,” Marsh added.
Travel agents at the workshops were trained on Playa Resort’s Travel Agent site AgentCASH+ (www.agentcashplus.com).
When a travel agent reports their sale on the agent portal, the clients will receive a lovely amenity in their suite with a personal note from the travel agent – “it’s such a nice touch,” Marsh said.
Travel agents also accumulate points, and they can be cashed in anytime for either free nights and/or a pre-paid Visa card. The choice is up to the travel agent.
“We are currently offering double points for Yucatan Resort as well as a chance to win a $100 gas card. Who wouldn’t love that?” Marsh said.
The site is also a great resource for travel agents with online courses, media library, webinars, travel agent rates, groups and weddings as well as Playa’s direct booking site where travel agents earn a minimum of 12 per cent commission.
At the workshops, Playa Resorts’ innovative “Group Code” program was discussed, which allows travel agents to create a group from individual FIT bookings.
Group Code doesn’t require a group contract and with Playa’s generous compensation ratio, it’s a fantastic way to increase commissions as any comp rooms are refunded to the travel agency or client (your choice) after travel is completed.
Workshops in the rest of the country will be announced shortly.