U.S. Travel Industry Recognises Ocean Holidays as a Top International Tour Operator

We are proud to have been recognised by the US travel industry as one of America’s best International Tour Operators.

On Monday 6th June 2022, the U.S. Travel Association and Brand USA honoured 51 of the world’s highest-producing tour operators and buyers of U.S. travel at its annual Chairman’s Circle Honors awards reception. Held at SeaWorld Orlando during the association’s 53rd annual IPW, this exclusive awards event—co-hosted by Brand USA—honoured international travel buyers for outstanding efforts to bring global travellers back to America.

Remarks thanking the select companies for boosting international inbound travel to the United States were delivered by U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow and Brand USA President and CEO Chris Thompson. They praised the work and partnership these organizations deliver to rebuilding inbound travel and tourism has never been more important following the challenges of the past two years.

The U.S. Travel Association’s Chairman’s Circle-level members, including top U.S. travel businesses and destinations, nominated the honourees.

“The work of our Chairman’s Circle honourees is vitally important to bringing visitors back to the United States and accelerating the recovery of the inbound travel sector,” said U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow. “Their efforts extend well beyond the benefits realized by the U.S. tourism economy and include reuniting Americans with the world and re-establishing cultural ties that we have missed these last two years.”

“Consumer confidence is key to recovery, and tour operators and buyers play an incredibly important role in helping increase travellers’ ease in exploring new destinations,” said Brand USA President and CEO Chris Thompson. “This year’s Chairman’s Circle honourees are essential to helping people navigate the new travel landscape with their expertise and deep connections to those across the industry.

Co-CEO of Ocean Holidays, Harry Hastings, offered this response, “We are delighted to be recognised as one of the top international tour operators in the US in 2022. From closed borders to the return of holidays, it’s been a rollercoaster few years for everyone, not just our theme park enthusiasts. So as a family-run business, we couldn’t be prouder to have helped loved ones rediscover their favourite US destinations. And as the fastest-growing travel company in the UK, we hope to remain among this esteemed list of fellow honourees for many years to come.”

Ocean Holidays appoints Angus Bond as Strategy Consultant

ROMFORD, Friday 29 April 2022: Ocean Holidays, the long-haul holiday and luxury travel specialists, today announces the appointment of Angus Bond, ex-Virgin Holidays, as a Strategy Consultant on a contract basis. The existing leadership structure of Ocean Holidays remains unchanged, with Angus joining in a consultancy capacity, working closely with the rest of the team.

Angus previously held several diverse senior roles throughout an 18-year period at Virgin Holidays and Virgin Atlantic, where he was responsible for various commercial, e-commerce and digital functions and for successfully transforming working practices and leading experts to work collaboratively as high performing teams.

In his new role at Ocean Holidays, Angus will be tasked with providing counsel and strategic recommendations across key areas of the business to drive future growth, namely across Product, Marketing, Tech, and Sales. He will support the business in evaluating further growth opportunities and distribution beyond its core offering, reporting into the co-CEOs.

Ocean Holidays, the largest Florida holiday specialist in Europe and the fastest growing travel business in the UK, recorded its busiest Easter period for bookings in its 19-year history. The business is now set to expand and diversify its product offering both through the trade and direct to consumer, with plans in place to grow existing sectors outside of Florida , including but not limited to California, New York, Mexico and the Caribbean, as well as Cruise and Stay. Similar to its Florida programme, holidays will be available as far as 36 months in advance with guaranteed pricing.

Harry Hastings, Co-chief Executive, Ocean Holidays, commented: “We’re delighted to welcome Angus to the team. He brings with him a wealth of knowledge and expertise, and this appointment is evidence of our continued growth and success as the fastest growing travel company in the UK.”

“We’re focused on continuing on this growth trajectory and Angus’ consultancy will be invaluable as we continue to diversify the business to make travel experiences the best they can be for our employees, customers and partners.”

Commenting on his appointment, Angus Bond, Strategy Consultant, Ocean Holidays said: “It’s an exciting time to be joining Ocean Holidays with the brand poised for the next chapter in its growth story. The business showed its resilience during the pandemic, which is testament to its staff and culture the leadership have created here. I hope to broaden the existing expertise within the team, and support the business in its ambitions to further scale and diversify.”

DREAM JOB: Theme Park Tester shares top five insider tips.

After 21 days and a packed itinerary, Ocean Florida’s Official Theme Park Tester, 27-year-old Alexandria Adamson from Glasgow has now returned home from her role to share her top five insider tips for exploring the exhilarating theme parks on offer in the sunshine state and crowns her favourite park…

Alexandria’s top five insider tips for exploring Orlando’s theme parks:

1. Get app ready

“Before you head to a park, check what apps you may need. Most of the parks have their own apps to help you navigate during your time there and make the most of it! You can find useful information like wait times and maps as well as the entertainment and food on offer.”

2. Remember there is more to parks than rides

“Although I love an adrenaline rush, there is so much more to the parks than just the rides! I would recommend taking the time to explore the parks and especially make time to try the food and drink, this will also help you to break up the day so you’re not just spending time queuing for rides – just because one ride has the longest line doesn’t mean it’s the best attraction in the park either!”

3. Book, book, book!

“As part of planning ahead, book reservations at the restaurants you’re keen to try. Theme parks can get crowded and busy, meaning it can be really difficult to secure a table at the best restaurants. If you’re eating on the go, make the most of mobile ordering if possible to save time for enjoying the attractions!”

4. Go resort hopping

“Although the parks are great, make sure you spend some time resort hopping if you can. Resorts offer something different to the parks and you can usually find some of the best bars and restaurants. My personal favourites on Disney Property are in the Disney resorts, Enchanted Rose at Grand Floridian, Jellyrolls at Boardwalk, and Trader Sam’s at Polynesian need to be on your list! The same can be said for Citywalk, I think the food and drink options available here are amongst the best in Universal Orlando Resort.”

5. Become a pro-planner

“I’ve mentioned the importance of planning ahead already but it is so important to pre-plan before you venture out to Florida, it can make or break your trip! Orlando tends to be in a ‘busy period’ for most of the year so the parks can be overwhelming at times, with so much to try the key is planning ahead. 

“Take note of what you want to do, book dining and check out any seasonal events which may affect or disrupt your plans. Preplanning and booking as much as possible before you even arrive will make your trip run smoother.”

Alexandria’s favourite park revealed

Sharing which park and attraction took the top spot for Alexandria during her role, she said: “After deliberating and looking back at my itinerary, my favourite two days of the trip were those spent at Universal Resort Orlando. I love the layout of the Universal Resort and the ability to jump between the two parks and their CityWalk area is a really unique offering compared to other theme parks in Florida.

“The experience of the resort is truly magical and immersive and I think this is best represented with Diagon Alley in Universal Studios which then flows into Hogsmeade and Hogwarts in Islands of Adventure with the help of the Hogwarts Express to join them together.

“My three favourite rides are Islands of Adventure – The Incredible Hulk coaster, Hagrid’s Magical Creatures Motorbike Adventure and the brand new Jurassic World VelociCoaster. These are three unbelievable coasters with unique distinctions from one another and well-told narratives which only add to the magic. This makes Islands of Aventure one of my ultimate favourite parks for rollercoasters.”

“I would recommend visiting Islands of Adventure both in the day and at night if you have the chance because the rollercoasters offer totally different experiences depending on the time of day – and I always ask for either the front or back rows for an extra adrenaline boost!”

Harry Hastings, Co-Ceo at Ocean Florida comments: “We are delighted to have finally been able to send Alexandria over to Orlando to complete her role as our Official Theme Park Tester. It’s been great to see her daily updates and take a look at all of the activities she’s been getting up to during her role.

“For anyone looking to visit Orlando, definitely keep Alexandria’s review of the top parks and attractions in mind for the inside scoop!”

To find out more about Alexandria’s time in Orlando as Ocean Florida’s Official Theme Park Tester, visit: https://www.ocean-florida.co.uk/theme-park-tester/

-ENDS-

Notes to editors

About Ocean Florida

https://www.ocean-florida.co.uk

Part of the Ocean Holidays group, Ocean Florida is the leading independent Florida travel specialist.

Ocean Holidays Group is a privately owned, family-run business founded in 2004 by two sets of brothers: Daniel and David Ox, and George and Harry Hastings, who are still very much active in the business today.

From its humble beginnings, Ocean Holidays Group has grown significantly year over year and according to the latest ATOL report, for 2022 Ocean Holidays is the largest growing travel group in the UK, when compared to pre-pandemic levels. The group consists of three unique and distinct travel brands:

·        Ocean Florida is Europe’s largest independent Florida travel specialist thanks to its proprietary CRM technology and offline customer acquisition model. Specialising in package holidays to Florida with a focus on villa rentals, Ocean Florida will send more than 45,000 passengers to Florida in 2022

·        Winged Boots is a personalised travel management company that specialises in worldwide luxury travel for leisure and business clients.

·        Ocean Beds is the largest worldwide provider of Florida vacation home rentals to the global travel trade.

With headquarters in Romford, and an office in Orlando, with 24/7 availability, just a few miles from Walt Disney World Florida, Ocean Holidays Group continues to innovate and evolve within the travel industry.

In 2018 the company was named the fourth fastest-growing travel company in the UK by BDO and won ‘Best Holiday Company to the USA’ by the British Travel Awards in 2018, 2019 and again in 2020.

Optimisation is the key for success for the travel industry

GUEST POST: Travolution asked Daniel Ox, Co-chief Executive of Ocean Holidays, to discuss why Optimisation is the key to success.

As the travel sector continues its recovery, the industry continues to experience a period of transformative change. Business models are being adapted to be fit for purpose in the post-pandemic world and travel bosses are looking at ways to future-proof their businesses. 

However, there are some lessons I’ve learned over the years around best practise for operating a travel business which are still relevant in today’s environment, and which will stand the test of time. Ocean Holidays is now the fastest growing travel business in the UK and our desire to continually optimise, even the minutiae, has been pivotal to its success. Below are my top tips for optimising a travel business. 

  1. Do sweat the small stuff

I remember when I was 15, at the dinner table of a friend’s house, discussing with his parents what jobs we might be interested in when we left school or went on to university. His dad went on to explain his role as a consultant for Ford Motor Company. His job was to walk the factory floors and find ways in which he could optimise the manufacturing process. He explained that the smallest of changes to even a workers’ walking pattens on a production line could save the company hundreds of thousands per year by either saving overheads or increasing output.

Fast forward a few years and my day-to-day looks similar in many ways to my friend’s dad’s, just swapping out factory floors for call centres and the manufacturing process with the customer journey. When looking to optimise a travel business, even the smallest modification can make a huge difference – whether that’s related to online booking conversion, call generation, customer service, or any other aspect. 

2. Break down fundamental business processes into key stages

Optimisation comes in many forms across different areas of the business, but naturally we started our journey at the front-end website, constantly looking to generate more and more sales leads for our agents – and we did this very successfully. 

But with sales success comes operational burden, and so, as we matured, we started to apply the same A/B testing logic across other areas of the business. We broke down fundamental business processes into key stages, following the customer along their interactions with us, from start to finish. 

Breaking down each significant part of the business processes and overlaying these areas with data allows you to see where the biggest points of KPI influence are within the journey. It’s usually this point at which to identify opportunities to 2X, 5X or even 10X a company’s key KPIs in a very short period, dependant on the operational change or technological requirement.

An example of this is the quote process. By testing the response time of sales agents to customer enquiries, you will quickly conclude that responses sent in seconds, as opposed to just one hour later, can result in a 2X conversion outcome.

3. Set up a dedicated optimisation team 

Creating a dedicated optimisation team of an eclectic mix of stakeholders across the business from tech, marketing, operations, and sales, and bringing this group together on a regular basis, can really help to move the dial. 

The results of these meetings should be a mixture of operational change, technological development and policy making. The quicker these changes can be rolled out to test, the faster your metrics will increase. Of course, as your business scales, these optimisations have a more profound impact on margins.
Identifying optimisations can be very exciting, and very quickly you will have a long list of projects. But almost as important as identifying optimisation opportunities is the management of delivery to the business. The best way to do this is using a scoring methodology against each opportunity.

There are lots of methods used for scoring project management or technology timelines, I.C.E being a common and useful one; Impact; Confidence; and Ease. At Ocean Holidays we use a form of I.C.E, but also layer in further scores for: Sales Impact; Automation impact; Customer Experience Impact; and one of our newer scoring metrics, ESG Impact. By scoring each potential optimisation, it gives you confidence that you’re delivering the biggest outcomes in the shortest amount of time. A skilled project manager needs to be able to balance small impactful projects that may take days, against long-running projects that can take months or even years.

At Ocean Holidays we obsess over the continuous optimisation of the customer journey which I believe has played a major role in making us the fastest growing ATOL holder in the UK. I’m sure within your business there will be multiple optimisations that can 3X or even 10X your KPIs over time. It’s just a case of identifying them and planning the quickest route to delivery. 

The evergreen appeal of the Sunshine State

  • Europe’s leading Florida holiday specialists Ocean Holidays announces a record Easter for bookings to the U.S state, experiencing a 65% increase compared to 2019
  • UK travellers are on average spending £1,500 more than in 2019 on luxury upgrades for their trips this Easter to enhance the holiday experience
  • Villa demand surges with an increase of over 10% on 2019 as consumers seek privacy

Florida has been through a transformative period over the past two years, with domestic migration to the state increasing significantly throughout the pandemic.[1] With Brits now able to travel to the state unimpeded by restrictions, Ocean Holidays has recorded its busiest Easter ever in its 19-year history.

For many, this will be the first Easter they have been able to travel abroad since 2019 and Brits are seizing the opportunity to treat themselves to a long-haul trip. The UK’s fastest growing travel group,[2] Ocean Holidays, has experienced a 65% increase in bookings to Florida for Easter 2022, compared to 2019. Travellers are also spending over £1,500 more per trip than they did in 2019 during the same period, indicative of Brits’ desire to make the most of their holiday abroad.  

“We’re seeing Brits flock in their droves to longer-haul destinations such as Florida, seemingly making up for lost time following a heavily disrupted two-year period. We’ve seen an incredible 65% uptick in bookings to the state, and as a result this is our busiest Easter period to date,” comments Harry Hastings, co-chief executive, Ocean Holidays. “Over the past few years, the Florida tourism landscape has drastically changed. Where Florida might once have stood for Disney World, Sea World and Spring Break, today it’s more like a holiday of lifetime on steroids.”

PROOF OF POPULARITY

According to ABTA, the USA is second on the list of top 10 overseas destinations people plan to travel to in 2022, climbing from third in 2021.[3] Almost one in five (18.1%) of people plan to travel there this year, with New York and Florida among the most popular destinations.[4]

In 2020 Florida overtook New York with its market share of all oversees visitations, growing from 23.8% in 2019 to 30.3% in 2020, while visits to New York dropped to 21.6% in the same timeframe. Meanwhile, Florida has also overtaken California in the list of US states travellers from the UK and Ireland are most interested in, taking it to the second most sought-after holiday destination behind New York.[5]


[1]https://www.census.gov/library/stories/2022/03/net-domestic-migration-increased-in-united-states-counties-2021.html#:~:text=The%20share%20of%20counties%20that,in%20the%202020%2D2021%20period.

[2]https://www.ocean-holidays.co.uk/

[3]https://www.abta.com/news/abta-reveals-most-popular-destinations-2022-travel-testing-requirements-ease

[4 https://www.abta.com/news/abta-reveals-most-popular-destinations-2022-travel-testing-requirements-ease

[5]https://www.ttgmedia.com/news/new-research-shows-increased-interest-in-lesser-known-florida-destinations-32484

EVOLUTION OF FLORIDA AND FRESH APPEAL

Florida is no longer just about retirees, Spring Break and Disney. More than 33,000 New Yorkers packed up and moved to Florida during the pandemic, and many are making the move permanent[1]. Given this new influx of tourists and residents, and the subsequent boost to the economy, tourism in the state has been forced to evolve to meet this unprecedented demand by diversifying its products to meet the needs of the new demographics.

We’re seeing a trend towards experience-based, twin-centre holidays. This means combining destinations, such as a Disney theme park on-site stay with a villa stay, or a Gulf Coast Beach extension. Some travellers are also going further afield and twinning Orlando with New York, Vegas and other popular US destinations to make more of their time in the States.

SURGE IN VILLA HOLIDAYS  

There has been a fresh surge in demand for villas, accelerated by the pandemic as people sought their own private accommodation to avoid other people in hotels. Now, over 35% of Ocean Holiday bookings made for Easter 2022 are villa holidays, an increase of over 10% in comparison to 2019.

The demand is such that Ocean Holidays is expanding its villa portfolio in the region by over 150% by the end of 2022, offering new accommodation in increasingly visited areas such as Bear’s Den Reunion, Solara, and Sonoma.

With the fresh surge in demand, coupled with travellers finally travelling again after waiting for years, comes a higher level of service expected. “Over the pandemic we’ve looked at ways to optimise the customer experience, by evolving how our staff work,” comments Harry Hastings, co-chief executive, Ocean Holidays. “Customers now can check into their villa online, and head straight there from the flight, something that was not possible before. All of our staff are trained in concierge services, so that when in Florida customers can speak to one of the Ocean Holidays team locally 24 hours a day based at our welcome centre 10 minutes from Walt Disney World.”


[1] https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-9815601/More-33-000-New-Yorkers-moved-Florida-pandemic.html

Ocean Holidays Wins Feefo Platinum Trusted Service Award

We are delighted to announce that Ocean Holidays has won this year’s Platinum Trusted Service Award from Feefo. This recognition is for businesses that “put trust first” and for our “outstanding achievement in delivering consistently excellent customer service.” To reach the coveted Platinum level, a business must have provided Gold Trusted Service for three consecutive years with a rating of at least 4.5/5 – we are proud to have maintained a perfect score of 5/5.

Trust for Ocean Holidays starts by looking after our employees, and we believe that by doing so customers will receive the very best service. We have recently been accredited as a Living Wage Employer, and we credit this award to our people-first principles. Beyond financial benefits, we also value people as individuals, right through to our personalised holiday packages. These values have taken us from the humble beginnings of Teletext marketing for Orlando holidays, to a worldwide leisure portfolio for all types of travel.

Co-CEO of Ocean Holidays, Harry Hastings, offered this response:
“Last year we were awarded a ‘Good To Work For’ accreditation by the B Companies survey, however, we wanted to ensure that we keep on improving. We are so grateful to our customers to have achieved the Platinum Trusted Service Award in 2022 which is shaping up to be our best yet. After a record-breaking number of bookings since January, we have bold ambitions for the future, where we will always stick to our founding mission of doing the right thing by our colleagues, customers, and partners.”

Ocean Holidays Group Becomes Accredited Living Wage Employer

Ocean Holidays Group, the UK’s largest growth travel group*, has become an accredited Living Wage employer, meaning all full-time staff earn a minimum of £23,000 per year.

The Romford-based business, which has more than 150 employees, joins almost 9,000 other UK companies which have voluntarily signed up to pay their employees a real Living Wage. This is an independently calculated hourly rate of pay that is based on the actual cost of living, determined each year by the Living Wage Foundation.

The real Living Wage is higher than the Government’s National Minimum Wage or the National Living Wage. It is currently £9.90 in the UK, with a higher rate of £11.05 for London, reflecting the higher costs of living in the capital. The government’s national living wage for those over 23 years old is currently £8.91, and £8.36 for the under 23s, with no London weighting.

Ocean Holidays Group head of people, Karen Sheehan, commented: “We are delighted to be able to offer our team the real Living Wage, and view this step as an important means of us encouraging more young people to work in the travel industry by offering them a more meaningful salary.”

In the last year, the group has employed two apprentices, and before it was disbanded in December 2021, took on two employees through the government’s Kickstart Scheme, which provided funding to create jobs for 16- to 24-year-olds on Universal Credit. After successfully passing through these programmes, they would move to the real Living Wage as full-time members of staff.

Sheehan said: “This week is National Apprenticeship Week and at Ocean Holidays Group we pride ourselves on offering our under 18-year-old apprentices 60 per cent more than the Government apprentice minimum wage. By investing in our people, at all levels, not only is it the right thing to do, but we have seen better staff retention levels and been able to attract a greater calibre of new recruits.”

Ocean Holidays Group, which also recently announced new programmes of work to champion diversity and inclusion, sustainability and community, has extended the initiative to its staff in its Florida office with best equivalent salary guarantees.

The group’s employees in the USA are paid a minimum of $15 per hour, and benefits include full private healthcare, and holiday entitlement of a minimum of 20 days plus Bank Holidays.

*Ocean Holidays Group is the largest growing UK travel group in 2021 – 2022 period compared to the last pre-pandemic year in 2019-2020 as per CAA rankings and the BDO diaries 2022.

Ocean Holidays Group Commits to Making Strides to Balance People, Planet and Profit as It Eyes Further Growth

Group unveils family-friendly policies, mental health support plus launches diversity and inclusion, sustainability, and community programmes

Ocean Holidays Group, the UK’s largest growth travel group*, has committed to making strides in balancing people, planet, and profit in 2022 and beyond, as it launches programmes dedicated to bolstering diversity and inclusion, sustainability and community work.

Harry Hastings, co-chief executive, said: “We start 2022 off having had a record-breaking year for new bookings in 2021 and bold ambitions for the future. Today, we are the largest growth travel group in the UK and our commitments are not only good for business but also ensure we continue to do the right thing by our staff, our customers, partners and wider society.

“We have spent the past six months going through every element of the business and have pulled together our business plan to ensure that future growth is underpinned by our people, our community and our planet.

“Last year we were awarded a ‘Good To Work For’ accreditation by the B Companies survey, and we want to ensure that we keep improving.”

Enhancing its commitment to its people, the group has recently started working with everymindatwork as its mental health wellbeing partner and has introduced a number of family-friendly policies for all staff, including pregnancy loss, parental bereavement leave and specific menopause support.

“Family-friendly policies help ensure employees can take leave, work from home and pursue other options, when necessary, in order to take care of family needs. Reducing team-members’ stress enhances job focus and allows us to retain employees who may otherwise resign to take care of family matters.

It also helps us maintain employee satisfaction because of the focus we place on family and work-life balance, as well as demonstrating the value we place on our team, of course,” commented Hastings.

Alongside this, are three separate programmes looking at diversity and inclusion, sustainability, and community.

Speciality consultancy Compelling Culture has been appointed as our external diversity and inclusion advisers, who will work alongside Karen Sheehan, head of people, as guardians of this stream of work.

Hastings added: “We have appointed external resource for this programme as we feel their expertise will ensure we build the foundations for learning, developing and importantly taking meaningful action that ensures long-term impact.”

Overseeing the community work is Matt Rains, programme manager, and Anna-Maria Janssen, head of product and commercial, is leading up the sustainability stream as its guardian.

Within all three programmes will be teams of up to six champions and team members from the group. They, along with the programme guardians, will kick off work in February and work with the wider company to deliver on integrating its environmental and social impact into day-to-day operations. The brief includes a three-year road map of measurable goals to be achieved by 2024.

“A recent staff survey highlighted that the team at Ocean Holidays Group is very supportive of being a part of this important work, with more than 80 per cent wanting to get personally involved. We realise that we are only just at the beginning of this project, but we are fully committed.

“Like many businesses who are seriously considering their impact we all have to start somewhere. We will be updating on our progress on all fronts throughout the months and years ahead,” said Hastings.

*Ocean Holidays Group is the largest growing UK travel group in 2021 – 2022 period compared to the last pre-pandemic year in 2019-2020 as per CAA rankings and the BDO diaries 2022.

Ocean Florida launches programme to travel trade with agent competition

Specialist Florida tour operator, Ocean Florida, launches competition for agents to win a Florida holiday for four as it expands travel trade programme

Ocean Florida, the UK’s No.1 specialist tour operator to Florida, is set to scale up sales of its package holidays to the UK travel trade following a successful trial that was launched in July 2020 in response to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Whilst Ocean Beds has been successfully selling villas to the UK travel trade for several years, Ocean Florida had previously only sold Florida holidays direct to the consumer.

The initiative was launched in response to the impact of COVID-19 on the travel industry as Ocean Florida was able to leverage its ability to sell package holidays to the USA for dates beyond when airline seats were on sale, with guaranteed pricing.

Following a limited roll-out with a few consortia including The Travel Network Group, Advantage Travel and Barrhead Travel to name a few, Ocean Florida now has over 250 agents actively booking not only USA holidays, such as Orlando villa and hotel holidays, but also Caribbean beach holidays, New York hotels and California road trips.

With a team of 12, including 8 dedicated sales agents, the programme is now being expanded to the wider UK travel trade and they have the chance to win a 12-night holiday for four to Florida in 2023 or 2024 with flights, villa, car hire, and Ocean Explorer tickets all included.

Once an agent signs up to the programme on www.ocean-florida.co.uk/agents and completes the onboarding process, they can join our exclusive Facebook group (Ocean4Agents) where they receive details of exclusive offers and product updates and access to our dedicated trade sales team to support with all their needs.

Melanie Saavedra, Managing Director of Travel Sense Ltd said “Ocean Florida have been an amazing new edition to Travel Sense and we couldn’t be happier. Quote turnaround time is so quick, completely professional with outstanding knowledge and nothing is too much trouble. They are now our go-to for everything USA and more! Great product, great service and a pleasure to work with, we love Ocean Florida.”

Ann-Maria Agar, Head of Trade Sales, said “As soon the travel restrictions came in last March, we leaned on our B2C brand Ocean Florida, who had holidays on sale up to 2024, to assist agents wanting book or amend holidays to later dates. Very quickly we were up and running with a select group of agents and we’re delighted to be expanding our offering to the wider travel trade and launching a holiday competition for our trade partners.”

Harry Hastings, Co-CEO, said “Like many businesses, when COVID-19 hit we had to pivot our business if we wanted to thrive when the market started to fully recover. Our trade sales have become an increasingly important and valued part of our business strategy and we look forward to building our trade programme with travel agents.”

Ocean Holidays Scoops Hat-Trick of Prestigious Awards

Ocean Holidays was delighted to scoop three prestigious awards at a glittering travel industry ceremony in London last night (November 25), including a special award for ‘Rising Brand of the Year’.

Alongside the Rising Brand accolade, we are proud to have been recognised as Champions of Data and Best CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Platform, by online travel news site Travolution. These awards are testament to the company’s successful strategy throughout the last year, which has seen us become the fastest growing tour operator in the latest ATOL listings when compared to the pre-pandemic period.

Ocean Holidays comprises three unique and distinct travel brands. Ocean Florida, the largest direct-to-consumer Florida specialist in Europe; Winged Boots, which leads in personalised luxury leisure holidays; and Ocean Beds, the largest worldwide provider of Florida vacation home rentals to the global travel trade.

Harry Hastings, Co-CEO of Ocean Holidays said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have been recognised by industry leaders for our work over the past year which has been incredibly challenging, to say the least, for the global travel industry. We’ve always put our customers and the smart use of technology and data at the heart of everything we do, and these awards are testament to our strategy and the hard work of our talented team.”

Lee Hayhurst, Travolution executive editor, said: “After such a challenging period we’re delighted that we were able to get our finalists together in a room to celebrate the incredible talent that exists in the travel and technology sectors.
It’s hard not to be impressed by just how the sector has reacted to diversity and found ways to survive, and in many cases thrive, during the most difficult period the sector has ever faced. Congratulations!”