There are now 4709 New Zealand specialists across the globe, up from 1674 only two months earlier.
Tourism New Zealand’s Director of Trade, PR and Major Events René de Monchy says, “the rapid increase in the number of specialists is reflective of the numerous changes we made to make the programme more accessible and beneficial to travel sellers.”
Changes to the 100% Pure New Zealand Specialist Programme included the introduction of a bronze, silver and gold tier system for offshore travel sellers, establishing an incentivised progression pathway.
A New Zealand based specialist status was also introduced so local travel sellers could be a part of the successful training programme.
“The New Zealand based status has proven to be a popular addition, with almost 800 local travel sellers joining the programme since it was introduced,” says René.
The new status was designed for travel agents in New Zealand who sell to offshore clients. Benefits of obtaining the status include a public listing on newzealand.com and use of a specially designed logo.
“By joining the programme and becoming a New Zealand specialist travel sellers gain access to what is essentially free advertising on our consumer website which is visited more than 30 million times a year.
“The public listing is a benefit available to both New Zealand based and global specialists and allows consumers to find travel agents through a trusted source,” says René.
Offshore travel sellers are being introduced to the new and improved programme at Tourism New Zealand’s frontline training events and trade shows. Market-specific promotions have also been launched to incentivise travel sellers to join the programme and reach gold status.
In the United States, the United Kingdom and Germany we have partnered with airlines to offer travel sellers heavily discounted flights to New Zealand to go on a self-conducted famil. While they are here they are encouraged to take advantage of the Explore New Zealand Discount Programme.
“The aim of these promotions is to raise awareness of the New Zealand Specialist Programme and to increase the number of specialists in each of these regions,” says René.
“While they’re in New Zealand our Explore Programme allows the agents to experience New Zealand’s offering by participating in tourism activities at a discounted rate. The hope is that they will then be more motivated to sell New Zealand as a destination to their clients at home.”
There are currently over 1000 discount offers in the Explore New Zealand Discount Programme. New Zealand operators can join the programme on newzealand.com.