Category Archives: Travel

Sauchope Links introduce the parks first 3-bedroom caravan at their stunning coastal holiday park in Crail, Scotland

Sauchope Links holiday park near Crail in Scotland have expanded their accommodation offering to make the park more accessible to families, with the introduction of the first 3-bedroom unit.

The new 3-bedroom caravan has been introduced as part of a wider £800k investment in park by Largo Leisure Holidays who own six holiday parks across Scotland.The brand new, modern, 3-bedroom static caravan is located in a prime position with uninterrupted views across the Firth of Forth and its beautiful coastline. It is the only 3-bedroom unit on the park and is expected to be in high demand.

 

The large, family sized caravan, which can sleep up to 6 people, will boast one double bedroom and two twin bedrooms with all bedding provided as well as a family bathroom with walk-in shower. The modern open plan kitchen and lounge area is spacious, modern, and bright with high quality fixtures and fittings and all the mod cons making it the perfect accommodation for a fantastic self-catering holiday in the East Neuk of Fife.

Largo Leisure Parks Commercial Director, Rachel Mabbs said

 

“Sauchope Links is such a special park with amazing sea views and just a stone’s throw away from the famous, quaint fishing village of Crail. The park has a range of different accommodation types from Glamping Domes, Beach Huts and Lodges which sleep up to 4 people, so to be able to offer a caravan suitable for larger families to come and enjoy a holiday at Sauchope is really exciting and the new accommodation is already proving to be a popular choice. We can’t wait to welcome its first guests.”

Beautiful Crail

Stay at the new for 2024 3-bedroom Caravan (sleeps 6) at Sauchope Links –

Monday 12th August – 4 nights – from £653.

Friday 16th August – 3 nights – from £746.

Friday 23rd August – 7 nights – from £932.

The new caravan is available to book now via the website: www.largoleisure.co.uk

About Largo Leisure​

Largo Leisure Parks offer award winning glamping and lodge holidays in six stunning areas of Scotland.

Each park has its own unique characteristics and offers a varied choice of holiday accommodation to rent and own including self-catering glamping, wooden cabins, cottages, deluxe beach huts, premium lodges, and Caravans.

Largo Leisure Parks was founded in 2003 when it acquired its first holiday park in Scotland, Sauchope Links Park in the East Neuk of Fife. In March 2022, the group was acquired by Limerston Capital.

The aim of Largo Leisure Parks is to put the needs of their customers at the heart of their business, providing a wide choice of quality holiday homes at affordable prices or rental.  To learn more visit www.largoleisure.co.uk

 

Images show a Typical 3 Bedroomed Caravan when staying with Largo Leisure Holidays 

Homesitters honoured with awards for exceptional home and pet sitting services

Homesitters Ltd, the UK’s leading home and pet sitting company is thrilled to announce they have won two prestigious awards this year; SME News 2024 Business Elite Awards[i] for ‘Best Home & Pet Sitting Company 2024 in the UK’ and South England Prestige Awards 2023/2024[ii] for ‘Home & Pet Sitting Service of the Year’.

They were also placed third in the Dog Friendly Awards 2023[iii] in the ‘Day Care & Sitters’ category, and have just been shortlisted in the 2024 Allica Bank Great British Entrepreneur Awards[iv] in the ‘Family Business Entrepreneur of the Year’ category in the South East with the winners to be announced on 18 November at London’s Grosvenor House.

The Great British Entrepreneur Awards, often referred to as the “Grammys of Entrepreneurship,” celebrates the achievements of the UK’s most dynamic and innovative businesses. Each year, the awards receive thousands of applications, underscoring the competitive nature and high standard of the competition.

This year’s shortlist showcases a combined turnover of nearly £2.9 billion and employs approximately 20,000 people, highlighting the critical role these businesses play in driving economic growth and innovation. Previous winners include the founders of BrewDog, MyEnergi, Zilch, Grenade, and ClearScore, who have gone on to become household names.

Ben Irvine, Director of Operations at Homesitters Ltd said, “We are incredibly honoured to have won these awards and to be shortlisted in the Great British Entrepreneur Awards. This recognition is a testament to the hard work and dedication of all our homesitters and we are grateful to everyone that has supported us over the years.”

Homesitters Ltd provide a live-in home and pet sitting service while homeowners are away, ensuring the security and maintenance of their homes and looking after any beloved pets within their familiar home environment. One of the unique things about Homesitters is that unlike similar companies, all its home and pet sitters are employees.

Assignments vary in duration, from just a few days to several weeks. While dogs and cats are the most common pets that homesitters care for, they also look after a diverse array of animals, including poultry, horses, sheep, potbellied pigs, llamas, and even more exotic pets such as tortoises, spiders, snakes, and aquarium or garden pond fish.

Ben Irvine adds, “With travel back to pre-pandemic levels we are busier than ever and are currently recruiting new homesitters. It’s a great role for animal lovers, keen to explore new parts of the UK meeting new people and having new experiences. Although most don’t do it for the financial gain, it does provide a small income and people save on their own bills when on assignments too.

“Ideal candidates are responsible and reliable people, who are good listeners, readily available through the year, and sensitive to our clients’ requirements. Proven pet-care skills and a genuine affinity for animals are a bonus. We encourage those interested in working for a friendly, supportive and award-winning home and pet sitting company to apply.”

For more information and to apply to become a homesitter visit: www.homesitters.co.uk

About Homesitters Ltd

Homesitters Ltd was established in 1980 and is now the UK’s leading nationwide live-in home and pet sitting company, available throughout the year. It has looked after 100,000 plus bookings and has an extensive network of employees throughout England, Scotland and Wales.

All homesitters are meticulously vetted and are conscientious, sensible and responsible homeowners. Many have been pet owners and have experience looking after all different types of animals. It’s tantamount to the outstanding reputation and professionalism of the company that 70% of new clients re-book with Homesitters within two years and many have been clients since the 1980s.

 

References

[i] https://www.sme-news.co.uk/winners/homesitters/

[ii] https://prestigeawards.co.uk/south-england-prestige-awards/

[iii] https://www.dogfriendly.co.uk/awards/finalists

[iv] www.greatbritishentrepreneurawards.com

With an average saving of £6,000 per year, should more UK students opt to study in Europe?

2024 study reveals the UK’s tuition fees are a staggering 65% more expensive than in Europe

Xpatfone, a UK-based virtual phone number provider, empowering students to maintain their UK numbers abroad without incurring roaming charges, has conducted a comprehensive study, aiming to compare the costs of studying in the UK versus Europe and identify the top European universities that excel in cultivating the next generation of business leaders.

On average, studying in Europe £6,000 a year cheaper than studying in the UK

Country of University Tuition Fees start from (per year unless stated): Tuition Fees start from per year (£)
Switzerland CHF805 £692
Italy €950 £767
Spain €1,320 £1,125
Austria €726.72 per semester £1,239
France €2,770 £2,360
Germany €3,000 £2,558
Finland €4,000 £3,411
Belgium €4,175 £3,557
Netherlands €6,000 £5,112
Denmark €6,000 £5,116
Sweden SEK 80,000 £5,881
Norway* NOK 80000* £5,907
United Kingdom £9,000

According to data from TopUniversities, the average annual cost of studying in major European countries is just over £3,000, significantly lower than the £9,000 average in the UK. Switzerland offers the most affordable option, with courses starting at an impressive £690 per year, while Norway, the most expensive country to feature in our list, has courses starting at £5,900, still £3,000 cheaper than in the UK. This cost disparity may explain why UNESCO statistics show that around 40,000 UK students choose to study abroad each year.

Top European universities generate almost 300,000 CEOs & Managing Directors

 

Utilising data from The Times Higher Education’s list of top European universities and LinkedIn alumni profiles, Xpatfone’s research highlights the origins of future CEOs and Managing Directors. The study analysed LinkedIn profiles of alumni from the top 106 European universities offering English-speaking courses, covering graduates from 2000 to 2024. Remarkably, out of the 7,078,063 alumni studied, 298,758 (4.22%) have ascended to roles as a CEO or Managing Director.

 

University ranking based on “Times Higher Education” University ranking based on “Times Higher Education” without UK and Ireland universities University Country of University Total Alumni based on LinkedIn 2000-2024 Total of CEO’s & MD’s based on LinkedIn 2000-2024 Total % of CEO’s & MD’s based on LinkedIn 2000-2024
=139 =93 Copenhagen Business School Denmark 112,406 14,063 12.51
63 43 University of Lausanne Switzerland 3,464 308 8.89
48 32 University of Basel Switzerland 28,284 2,235 7.90
=114 =75 Università della Svizzera italiana Switzerland 12,909 1019 7.89
=114 =75 Lappeenranta-Lahti University of Technology LUT Finland 21,434 1,678 7.83
=139 =93 University of Innsbruck Austria 30,539 2,373 7.77
45 29 University of Bern Switzerland 34,632 2,660 7.68
=139 =93 University of Tartu Estonia 30,338 2,265 7.47
25 16 University of Zurich Switzerland 63,903 4,734 7.41
84 57 University of Mannheim Germany 42,790 3,025 7.07
=114 =75 TU Wien Austria 39,079 2,659 6.80
=87 =59 University of Münster Germany 50,056 3,245 6.48
=91 =62 Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies – Pisa Italy 5,984 386 6.45
4 1 ETH Zurich Switzerland 68,428 4,379 6.40
=114 =75 University of Hohenheim Germany 19,948 1254 6.29
37 24 Free University of Berlin Germany 438 27 6.16
=57 =37 University of Hamburg Germany 58,879 3,624 6.15
=114 =75 University of Oulu Finland 28,749 1,733 6.03
=91 =62 Aalto University Finland 56,383 3,363 5.96
69 47 University of Cologne Germany 59,805 3,531 5.90

Link to full results

Copenhagen Business School in Denmark leads the charge with a significant 12.51% of its alumni reaching top executive positions, despite being ranked joint 93rd by The Times Higher Education. Notably, the school outperforms others in cultivating leaders, underscoring a discrepancy between academic and professional achievements.

Swiss universities producing the next business leaders 

Not only do the Swiss offer affordable tuition fees, the study also reveals a strong performance by their universities when it comes to producing CEOs and Managing Directors. Universities such as the University of Lausanne, University of Basel, and Università della Svizzera italiana notably feature in the top five, highlighting Switzerland’s exceptional role in fostering business leadership.

Conversely, some highly academically ranked institutions like the University Paris-Saclay in France show a divergence in their expected influence on business leadership, ranking 9th by The Times Higher Education but 105th in Xpatfone’s survey for producing the next business leader.

This study reveals a significant financial incentive for UK students to pursue their education in Europe, with an average annual savings of £6,000. The research also highlights the remarkable success of European universities in producing future business leaders, with nearly 300,000 alumni achieving CEO and Managing Director positions since 2000. This comprehensive analysis underscores the value and impact of European education on both cost and career success, providing valuable insights for prospective students.

Xpatfone’s Co-Founder, Ed Clayton, expressed enthusiasm about the findings, stating,

 “Our study highlights the compelling financial benefits for UK students to study in Europe, saving an average of £6,000 annually. Moreover, our research underscores the exceptional ability of European universities to produce future business leaders, with nearly 300,000 alumni advancing to CEO and Managing Director roles. 

If you’re a student planning to take this exciting step in your learning, we can help you stay connected with friends and family. We offer a UK phone number that works seamlessly abroad without any additional charges.”

 

About the research:

 

About Xpatfone

With Xpatfone, you can continue using your UK number seamlessly abroad without worrying about any extra charges. 

FREE UK CALLS & MESSAGES

Xpatfone includes unlimited UK mobile and landline calls and texts, in case you need to phone home. Upgrade to our Solo Pro package to add extra countries and features.

UK RINGTONE, WORLDWIDE

Callers hear a UK ringtone, no matter where you are, and don’t pay any extra. And there’s no need to change phone numbers with banks or insurers. With Xpatfone you can receive verification codes on your UK number.

KEEP YOUR CURRENT UK NUMBER

Move your current UK mobile number to Xpatfone and save on costly contracts and roaming fees. Then take it back to your UK operator if you return to the UK. Or get a new number if you prefer!

WORKS INTERNATIONALLY

Backed by a UK Mobile Network, Xpatfone works seamlessly over your local 4G or Wi-Fi connection wherever you are in the world. Better yet, unlike with roaming, you don’t pay to receive calls.

Veezu teams up with Seatfrog to end the anxiety with trains and taxis

The travel duo join forces to upgrade passengers’ journeys from home to destination.

 

Veezu, the UK’s largest and fastest-growing private hire taxi technology platform, and Seatfrog, the rail ticketing app revolutionising train travel are excited to announce a strategic partnership to end the anxiety with trains and taxis.

 

From today, Seatfrog’s cutting-edge technology will be connected to Veezu’s extensive vehicle network, taking passengers from their home straight to the best seats on trains and then directly into a Veezu car on arrival at the best price available.

 

The partnership will eliminate the headache many passengers face across the UK, waiting in endless taxi queues or missing taxis because their train is running late, by connecting train journeys and taxi network data for the first time. Passengers’ rides will automatically connect to their rail departure and arrival times, so they can step out of the train station straight into their waiting Veezu ride.

 

Veezu passengers will also be able to easily upgrade their train tickets to first class on the way to the station, from as little as £13 – with Seatfrog’s unique app features, where Brits have saved over £80 million on first class upgrades.

 

Nathan Bowles, CEO of Veezu, commented, “Partnering with Seatfrog is an exciting step towards redefining travel in key UK cities. Together, we’re going to make it easier than ever for passengers to enjoy an integrated journey and sit in the best seats on the train.”

 

Seatfrog’s CEO, Iain Griffin, added, “Journeys should be easy, but in the UK, we’re constantly reminded that we’re mere mortals every time we jump off a train to catch a taxi – long queues, no vehicles available, surge pricing, stress. No one has seamlessly connected taxis to train journeys, changing that is long overdue.”

 

For more information about the collaboration between Veezu and Seatfrog visit https://www.veezu.co.uk/partners/seatfrog  and www.seatfrog.com/veezu.

5 Ways GenAI Powers The Travel Experiences Of The Future

Written by Matthew Biboud-Lubeck, Vice President EMEA, Amperity

The digital world has permanently changed the relationship between travel brands and their customers. Travellers are providing brands with more and more data in exchange for unique, personalised experiences. Yet despite this, the traditional loyalty program model appears to be failing to meet the demands of the next generation of travellers.

As McKinsey points out, reaching the top tier of a loyalty program, traditionally, was a facet of many travellers’ personal identities. Now, many loyalty program members now seem more inclined to play the field. According to its 2023 survey on travel loyalty, younger generations are more likely to consider and transact with multiple travel players. Gen Zers and millennials consider about 1.7 times as many brands as do baby boomers and the Silent Generation and transact with about 1.3 times as many brands.

Faced with fierce competition and a rapidly changing landscape, travel brands must innovate and win back their customers’ allegiances – or risk getting left behind at the terminal.

 

The game is changing for travel loyalty

For many travellers today, loyalty means much more than having a membership number or collecting points. To reap the most benefits from a loyalty program, members often feel obligated to commit to one brand. The reality of their lives and personal preferences are often very different.

Going all in with a brand makes sense for a traditional road warrior or a family whose primary vacation preference is going to Disneyland Paris four times a year. But those types of behaviours are increasingly becoming outliers. A majority of travellers want something different – different experiences for different travel occasions with different travel companions in different types of destinations.

Consumers’ expectations for loyalty are changing in a number of ways. They now expect brands to streamline reward interactions, allowing them to earn and redeem rewards quickly and easily, while also offering a variety of reward options to choose from – not to mention exclusive, differentiated benefits in exchange for their spending.

 

Loyalty that takes flight

For a peek into the balance travel brands are trying to strike, look no further than the recent updates to airline loyalty programs. These changes intend to recalibrate rewards so that elite members will feel truly special. But the flipside of that choice may be that lower-tier members feel devalued, and therefore, may not be as loyal to the brand.

Some experts predict that the future of loyalty might not look like an allegiance to a single brand at all. Instead, it will look more closely like a ‘choose your benefit’ or an à la carte service, offering flexibility as a perk. Loyalty members who traditionally remained loyal to one carrier in efforts to gain status and earn upgrades along with other perks may no longer see a reason to spend thousands of dollars to reach the “exclusive” next tier.

This seems to be the case with many younger travellers. A recent Morning Consult study found that just under half (46%) of Gen Z travellers said that it was “absolutely certain” or “very likely” they would patronise hotel brands in whose loyalty programs they were already enrolled. Moreover, 33 per cent said that they don’t trust these brands, despite being members of the programs.

These trends underscore the opportunity for travel brands to benefit by taking an open-minded approach to customer acquisition and retention. This would see them focus less on increasing loyalty membership for its own sake and more on earning travellers’ trust and winning their loyalty on a more personal level.

Loyalty programs are paying more attention to the less frequent leisure traveller, which requires staying top of mind through lifestyle marketing. Members still expect miles and points, but they also want recognition and experiences. This requires an intimate understanding of who they are.

 

Out with old and in with the AI-powered new

The old way of attempting personalisation was just “guessing” at it. Brands would make broad assumptions. For example, if guests were in one demographic, then they might like what a brand has to offer other people in that cohort. In practice today, personalisation means building a customer data strategy based on a unified, cohesive view of every traveller who comes through their purchasing funnel.

By leveraging new AI-powered technologies, travel brands will be able to create clear, holistic customer data strategies that enable them to build more direct, personal relationships with all of their customers, including those who are already in their loyalty programs and otherwise. Successful efforts to do so will lead to more bookings, additional cross-selling opportunities and higher lifetime value.

Of course, leveraging AI is relatively simple in concept but much more complex in execution. AI is only as good as the data it’s learning from. And it’s only as useful as the decision-making power that it’s given. The vast majority of consumers have accepted the fact that by virtue of being online, they are giving up personal data. The flip side is that now they expect companies to use that data to help improve their experience. The rise of AI in the public consciousness has only accelerated these preferences.

 

Travellers to brands: “Do whatever it takes to make my trip better”

Travellers no longer fear AI. They want companies to work faster and smarter to use it to the customer’s advantage. According to a 2022 survey of travellers worldwide, nearly 75 per cent said they were either “very” or “somewhat” interested in AI that would analyse their data as a means to provide more personalised offers and customer service.

Among those, approximately 30 per cent said they’re happy with whatever it takes to make their trip better. Perhaps more tellingly, about 45 per cent said they were interested, but with the caveat that they are given the opportunity to consent for its use with the explicit purpose of using that data to present better offers and advertisements or provide more personalised service.

Personalisation must be a holistic experience throughout the entire customer journey from online booking to customer service. However, the siloed nature of data and the lack of trust in its accuracy make it challenging to provide seamless personalisation at each touchpoint. Bridging these gaps requires a comprehensive understanding of the customer journey and the ability to infuse data into the personalisation process.

 

AI to replace the white-glove treatment

The introduction of AI, in general, and now generative AI, more specifically, has levelled the playing field for travel and hospitality companies. In the pre-internet days, the highest levels of service came from ultra-luxury, up-market brands that could afford to dedicate personal assistance for every individual need – the white-glove treatment, if you will.

Now, at every level of hospitality, from budget to 7-star, brands can communicate on an individual level in ways that their customers feel most comfortable. That’s not only creating better traveller satisfaction, it’s driving innovation faster across the entire industry. As our Head of Generative AI at Amperity Joyce Gordon says, “Brands with a good data foundation will be able to use generative AI and create personalised experiences that will quickly become ubiquitous, and they’ll shape customer expectations.”

She believes we’re going to see a lot of rapid innovation in the GenAI space over the next two years that is likely even faster than previous paradigm shifts we saw with internet, e-commerce and mobile adoption.

In practice, individual travellers don’t understand or experience the health of a company’s data program. They care about:

  • finding the right information at the right time as they plan their travels
  • enjoying a seamless travel experience in the moment

And they want to be appreciated by companies they’ve patronised after a stay and in between trips. By using all the data they have at their disposal, especially first-party data, brands have the opportunity to build direct relationships with a much wider base of customers.

 

“Brands can offer experiences that feel authentic if they use your first-party data,” says Gordon. “For instance, if a brand has purchased all of this third-party data and I’ve never been to their site and now suddenly they know all of these things about me, that feels creepy.

“It’s like the person you go on a date with who has stalked all of your social media. But if I’ve shared this information with you in the past – for bookings and for experiences where I know that information has been used – and if you use it well, it’s almost a relief.”

 

GenAI: Better data means better results

The conversational capabilities that GenAI enables will be an important game-changer. It’s more natural to provide preferences in a back-and-forth dialogue than checking a bunch of boxes or filling out one-way, predetermined form fields. That said, Gordon warns that the No. 1 issue holding brands back in deploying generative AI-powered agents is in fact that data foundation. A virtual agent powered by ChatGPT might seem cool, but if it doesn’t have any knowledge of the customer at the outset of a conversation, it’s going to feel robotic.

“Better data means better results in the world of generative AI,” Gordon says. “If you’re in a conversation with a chatbot, it’s actually more frustrating if it feels like you’re talking to a human, but it doesn’t have any of the personalisation that a real travel agent would be able to provide.”

In addition to customer service chatbots, which are the most common uses of generative AI today, below are several ways that generative AI will support the travel experience of the future.

 

5 Ways GenAI Will Support Future Travel Experiences

  1. Personalised booking: Given a generative AI-powered chatbot assistant vs. an open-ended search bar or filtering tool, travellers can react conversationally to suggestions, feeding more data back to the booking engine to create better and more specific recommendations.
  2. Ancillary offerings: Suggest the right add-ons based on real-time interactions and past preferences. Travelling by yourself? Here’s a deal including a massage. Going with your three kids? Pre-purchase those flight snacks.
  3. Automated creative generation: Of all the possible images and descriptive information a brand has on file, generative AI can respond to interactions with the user and serve up the options which will resonate best.
  4. Customer insights and recommendations: Understand patterns of actions customers typically take and give real-time recommendations for when customers want to redeem loyalty points, upgrade, etc.
  5. Simplified technology: The modes of how brands ask questions of their data itself will radically change, becoming more natural language-driven vs. code-based.

 

The future of travel is here and it’s personalised

Whether or not they admit it – or fully understand what’s happening – travellers are craving personalised, curated information at every turn. In the world of predictive search, social media feed algorithms, e-commerce recommendation engines and now GenAI, the bar has been set extremely high for travel companies to step up and provide similar levels of service to meet the demands of their customers.

The good news for travel brands is that their customers are already willingly sharing detailed information about themselves. No matter how much a person regularly shops at a pet food store, they’re not offering up intimate information about their day-to-day lives from work to family to individual wants and needs in the same way they will to enjoy a travel experience.

With the tools available to aggregate and activate traveller information into a CDP (customer data platform), travel brands can create truly personalised relationships with their customers today. Getting started is easier than it seems. Because there’s so much data out there, there’s a temptation to think big and try to boil the ocean. By starting with what they have, travel companies will realise they have a lot to work with.

 

They can use customer data to make better business decisions, such as:

  • Optimising their pricing strategies
  • Developing new products and services
  • Targeting their marketing campaigns more effectively

 

This can lead to increased revenue and profitability.

The most exciting part of building a strong customer data strategy today is its potential for tomorrow. The physical and digital worlds are continuing to blur, and the ability to connect data intake and analysis to reflect this reality will give travel brands a significant advantage in their ability to serve their customers of the future.

 

Optimise your customer data initiatives to achieve the goals below:

  • Build out first-party data collection. Expanding privacy restrictions are making it harder to use data provided by third parties, which comprise a majority of the customer data travel brands have today. Brands that evolve their data strategies and focus on first-party data will have a huge opportunity to provide better service using information they’ve received directly from the customer.
  • Reach beyond loyalty members. Combining data from loyalty programs with other sources helps to better understand each customer, effectively repositioning “loyalty” around the person instead of the program. By targeting customers with the greatest potential value – in the moment and over a lifetime, regardless of status – brands can start to formulate a more accurate foundation for their customer data and personalisation strategies.
  • Build a unified view of the traveller. Brands now have the ability to utilise platform technology that breaks down silos and collates data together into a unified view of each customer, which will enable them to develop detailed customer profiles and support personalisation efforts.
  • Drive personalisation to every customer touchpoint. There is a huge opportunity to use customer data to customise experiences for travellers throughout their journeys – and today’s consumers are clamouring for this. The next frontier will be using AI to learn what customers want and need without asking.

About the author

Matthew Biboud-Lubeck, Vice President EMEA, Amperity

Matthew is the vice president of EMEA where he is responsible for the commercial expansion of Amperity, a leading customer data platform trusted by brands like Reckitt, Under Armour and Wyndham Hotels & Resorts. Lubeck joined Amperity in 2017 to help launch the company and has served in a number of key roles building sales, customer success, and marketing functions. Matthew established Amperity’s LGBTQ employee resource group (ERG) and is a trusted advisor and customer-centricity change agent to the C-suite across leading consumer brands.

Prior to Amperity, Lubeck spent 10 years with global beauty conglomerates Estee Lauder Group and L’Oréal as Group Head of Customer Data Strategy and Analytics, leading 30 brands across luxury, mass and salon professional divisions to better use data & unlock incredible beauty experiences, establishing L’Oreal as an industry leader. He resides in London with his husband and young daughter.

 

About Amperity

Amperity delivers the data confidence brands need to unlock growth by truly knowing their customers. With Amperity, brands can build a first-party data foundation to fuel customer acquisition and retention, personalise experiences that build loyalty, and manage privacy compliance. Using patented AI and ML methods, Amperity stitches together all customer interactions to build a unified view that seamlessly connects to marketing and technology tools. More than 400 brands worldwide rely on Amperity to turn data into business value, including Alaska Airlines, DICK’S Sporting Goods, Endeavour Drinks, Planet Fitness, Seattle Sounders FC, Under Armour and Wyndham Hotels & Resorts. For more information, visit amperity.com or follow us on Linkedin, X, Facebook and Instagram.

 

Veezu crosses the finish line into partnership with Wolverhampton Racecourse

VEEZU, the Midlands’ leading private hire operator, is bolstering its partnership with Wolverhampton Racecourse as official ride partner and sponsor.

 

Upgrading its existing partnership, Veezu will be making travel even easier for hotel and racecourse visitors. For ease of booking, guests can request their Veezu vehicle from the grounds, through the pre-existing ride booker device located in the hotel’s reception. With the introduction of a new pick-up point, located outside of Holiday Inn Wolverhampton – Racecourse’s entrance, guests will now have instant and convenient access to their ride.

 

In addition to providing reliable transport, Veezu has sponsored the course’s finishing posts, with signage having launched last month.

 

Formerly known as Go Carz, this sponsorship is one of many that Veezu’s Midlands branch has made since rebranding, as it extends its links in the local community.

 

Graham Hoof, Regional Operations Director at Veezu, said: “We are very excited to extend our partnership with Wolverhampton Racecourse and support the many fantastic events and experiences hosted at the grounds throughout the year. This partnership is one of many that brings us closer to our goal of providing safe, reliable and convenient transport to passengers across the Midlands, and we look forward to further easing travel for Midlands locals and visitors.”

 

David Ideson, Executive Director at Wolverhampton Racecourse, said: “We are delighted to be welcoming Veezu as official ride partner and sponsor. This partnership will ensure that all guests can have the best experience possible, and not have to worry about their race day travel. The team at Veezu have been wonderful to work with already and I look forward to our future events with them.”

Arctic Direct becomes UK’s specialist for Northern Lights Holidays thanks to impactful digital strategy

Leading travel operator, Arctic Direct, has become the UK’s go to specialist for Northern Lights holidays, following the success of an impactful digital strategy implemented by results-driven agency, Ink Digital.

Launched in 2004, Arctic Direct prides itself on helping its customers explore the arctic wilderness through unique and exciting experiences in top destinations including Sweden, Greenland, Lapland, the North Pole, and more.

Focused on increasing market share and competing with household names in the travel sector, Arctic Direct appointed Ink Digital to position the brand as the go-to operator for Northern Lights Holidays, while attracting more affluent users to the site.

 

Following the implementation of bespoke strategy, Ink Digital accelerated its position in Google for over 200 keywords and achieved an impressive set of results for the ambitious brand, successfully increasing website sessions by 68% and online conversions by 131%.

In addition, the quality of enquiry has increased with minimum booking fees utilised to attract target customers. As such, the Arctic Direct team have been able to provide more effective quotes, while increasing sales.

Now, Arctic Direct is firmly cemented as the UK’s leading arctic travel operator – particularly for Northern Lights Holidays.

 

Michael Ryan, Founder and Director of Ink Digital, added: “Over the last five years, the Ink Digital team have worked hard to really hone our niche in the travel sector, and particularly in helping operators to navigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and accelerate growth.

“Our strategy for Arctic Direct is a prime example, where we used our existing knowledge of the travel industry combined with in-depth keyword research and competitor analysis to identify gaps in the market and engage target audiences. The results really do speak for themselves, having more than doubled website users, accelerated conversions, and established the Arctic Direct brand as a leading name in arctic experiences and travel.”

 

Headquartered in London, Ink Digital is a fast-growing digital marketing agency, underpinned by a proven track record in delivering real and impactful results for its growing client base.

 

For more information, visit:

https://www.arcticdirect.co.uk/

https://ink-digital.co.uk

Homesitting Benefits: survey reveals cost savings and adventure opportunities

Leading home and pet sitting company and winners of the SME Best Home & Pet Sitting Company 2024 – UK, Homesitters Ltd, conducted a survey amongst its homesitters, revealing that 66% have saved money on their utility bills due to being away from home on assignments for extended periods.

Additionally, 28% of homesitters prefer winter assignments, noting that being away for several weeks during the colder months results in significant energy bill savings—just one of the many benefits of homesitting.

 

Ben Irvine, Director of Operations at Homesitters Ltd, says: “Homesitters not only enjoy savings from reduced energy usage but also receive daily food allowances and travel expenses to and from assignments. This additional income is particularly appealing during the costly winter months and amid a cost-of-living crisis.”

 

Homesitting also serves as a financial cushion: 12% of homesitters have increased their assignments to ease financial pressures, and 20% use homesitting to supplement their pensions.

Many people approaching retirement seek a balance between work, leisure, and staying active. The survey found that 70% of retired homesitters engage in this role to keep busy and find purpose, while 77% appreciate the escape from daily life’s hustle and bustle.

For some, the love of pets is a major motivation, with 62% home & pet sitting for this reason. Adventure and travel are also key factors, with 75% enjoying the exploration of new areas, and 32% loving the opportunity to stay in beautiful homes.

The respondents also shared their top tips for successful homesitting: 70% emphasised the importance of asking lots of questions to clients in preliminary meetings and having a detailed plan of local activities. A love of animals and sturdy walking boots are also considered essential, as half of the homesitters recommended these for exploring new areas.

 

Other advice includes researching the breed or type of pet you’ll be caring for (37%), bringing pre-prepared meals (25%), and packing a good book (27%) to enhance the experience. Home & pet sitting is a wonderful way to enjoy pets without the long-term commitment, offering retirees the flexibility they desire.

 

Homesitters Ltd stands out because all its homesitters are employed by the company, ensuring professional support and reliability. Many homesitters choose to work with them due to this comprehensive support and assurance.

 

Ben adds, “Our homesitters are the backbone of our business. We provide them with all the necessary support, information, and assurance they need during assignments. This level of support is also reassuring for our clients, knowing they are getting fully vetted and reliable homesitters.

“We have been in business since 1980, building our reputation on having happy clients and homesitters. We operate throughout the UK and are always looking for new home and pet sitters to join our dedicated team.”

 

For more information about becoming a homesitter, please visit the Homesitters Ltd website at www.homesitters.co.uk.

Cornish ‘surfers’ paradise’ sailed to 95% direct bookings through Profitroom partnership

Three Mile Beach, a boutique resort in North-West Cornwall experienced skyrocketing direct bookings share levels reaching 95% within its first year with Profitroom.

Situated off the coast of St Ives Bay, widely known as ‘surfers’ paradise’ Three Mile Beach resort prides itself on offering all the comfort, freedom and space of having your own holiday home – but with all the amenities and services of a boutique hotel.

With 15 luxury beach houses with uniquely premium self-catering options, Three Mile Beach did not struggle for attention in the highly competitive market. However, its challenge lies in showcasing available dates, leading to a disjointed booking experience and revenue loss.

Three Mile Beach found Profitroom’s advanced cart abandonment and availability navigation systems a tech game-changer which saw its cart abandonment and retargeting tools contributing an additional 5% to their revenue since working with Profitroom. 

This aspect was crucial for Three Mile Beach, as they frequently encountered “unavailable” notifications for new clients and lacked reminders for abandoned carts with their previous provider.

Nick McIvor, General Manager at Three Mile Beach, said: “The results we saw after implementing Profitroom’s availability calendar and cart abandonment tool were eye-opening. 

“After our first three months with Profitroom, our direct bookings instantly rose by 28%, going on to reach 95% by the end of our first year. 

“Through working with Profitroom, we were able to eliminate our over-reliance on OTAs and seamlessly integrate the new technology into our existing POS system and minimise stumbling blocks for potential customers.” 

“We wanted a provider who could give us peace of mind and who could maximise our conversion rate online, and I could not fault the team at Profitroom. From the onboarding team to our customer success manager, I felt reassured to know that they were just a phone call away.”

Thanks to Profitroom’s hand-on customer service, the team were also able to identify package opportunities Three Mile Beach could seamlessly add on to their current offerings to boost average room spends.

This included packages from yoga and surf lessons, to foraging walks and a dinner with a private chef, all integrated at every customer interaction to further set Three Miles Beach apart from its competitors. 

As a result, there has been a remarkable 43% spike in year-on-year online package sales revenue and room nights by 15%.

Patryk Luszcz, UK Director at Profitroom, said: “Profitroom’s ethos is to partner with hotels and resorts worldwide and truly tailor the booking journey to their customers’ exact needs. Three Mile Beach’s impressive success is rooted in our dedication to providing guests the power of choice, allowing them to personalise their stay as they see fit.

“The next 12 months for Three Mile Beach are set to be its most exciting yet, and we can’t wait to help integrate a new strategy for the resort and find the best ways to secure more bookings and drive total revenue.” For more information about Profitroom and Three Mile Beach visit www.profitroom.com

SkyPeople Training soars as it helps aviation industry tackle cabin crew shortage

A specialist training provider is seeing demand take off as it helps the aviation industry tackle a huge global shortage of cabin crew.

According to Canadian flight crew training company CAE’s 2023 Aviation Talent Forecast, almost 600,000 cabin crew staff will be needed globally over the next 10 years.

Ryanair alone has unveiled plans to recruit 10,000 staff over the next decade as it expands its fleet with hundreds of new aircraft.

SkyPeople Training has seen dramatic growth in demand this year for the hands-on programmes it runs for students from colleges and universities across the UK which are educating the next generation of cabin crew.

So far in 2024, SkyPeople Training has worked with more than 40 UK colleges and universities and more than 25 airlines across the UK and Europe. The number of college and university students attending its sessions so far this year is approaching 1,000 and has nearly trebled compared with the same period in 2023.

SkyPeople Training, which delivers courses across the UK and internationally, has expanded its bespoke aviation training academy in Manchester as a result of the increase in student numbers attending the facility, where it also provides training for existing cabin crew and pilots employed by passenger and cargo airlines worldwide.

Its training includes theory and practical sessions on how to tackle a number of emergency situations on board, such as firefighting, smoke-filled cabins and evacuations.

It has recently added a new classroom at its academy as well as a mid-exit door for the Boeing 737 Max jet, with an entire replica Boeing 737 flight deck due to come later in the year.

The business is accredited by the Civil Aviation Authority as a cabin crew training organisation and security training provider, with a rating of ‘outstanding’.

This accreditation enables SkyPeople Training to provide the Attestation of Initial Cabin Crew safety training. All cabin crew working on UK-registered aircraft must possess the qualification.

SkyPeople Training also supports airlines by developing their training manuals, designing their training courses and delivering the product directly to their crew.

It has won recognition from industry experts in crew training, with invitations to deliver keynote speeches at events in the United States, Portugal and Vietnam.

Mike Lawson, SkyPeople’s training, project and outreach manager, said aspiring cabin crew benefit greatly from the hands-on experience they gain at the company’s academy.

“Recruitment is a significant challenge for airlines, and our academy is helping them to plug the gaps in their workforce,” he said.

“There’s an evolution in the way cabin crew training is delivered, shifting towards being competency-based. Historically, entrants had to take a paper examination and undergo an assessment.

“Hands-on experience is now seen as an increasingly necessary part of the curriculum for students looking to embark on their cabin crew careers. Providing that in our academy helps get the students ready for a professional working environment.

“This type of practical training is also beneficial for those already working in the industry who are seeking to gain the Cabin Crew Attestation or looking to grow in their careers.

“It’s an attractive career that provides long-term, meaningful opportunities. Our track record over more than a decade, combined with the recent additional facilities at the academy, means we are in a strong position to help bridge the gap between education and industry.

“Our close ties with a number of leading carriers enables us to help students find cabin crew roles once they successfully complete their courses, as they can register their interest in jobs that become available through our links with airlines.

“In 2023, we mentored a group of final-year aviation management students at Manchester Metropolitan University, getting them industry-ready and linking them to employment opportunities.

“In addition, this June we will be hosting our second Travel & Tourism, Aviation and Cabin Crew Lecturers Conference, which will be an opportunity for college lecturers from across the UK to join us for a day of CPD training delivered by ourselves and our airline partners, including Aer Lingus UK, British Airways and Ryanair’s recruitment partner Cabin Crew International.

“The recent investment to expand the academy demonstrates our confidence in the future of the business and our commitment to providing the most up-to-date training to enhance safety and competence across the industry.

“We’re extremely proud of our facility, which through continuous improvement we believe makes it the best independently-owned training centre of its kind in the UK, if not Europe.”

Donna Feeny, Head of Travel, Food and Drink at Leeds City College, said: “Our strong employer partnership with SkyPeople allows our students to experience first- class industry training. The skills they learn during their training fosters a seamless transition into a career in aviation.”

SkyPeople, which has eight permanent team members and a flexible network of 80 trainers, was acquired last year by Manchester-headquartered EDM, which manufactures and assembles training simulators for sectors including civil aviation, defence and rail industries.