With its range of small group tours and tailor-made trips, and with the help of its agent partners, InsideAsia Tours has reported 2017 as ‘an incredible year’ with both agent sales on the rise and an increase in overall sales at almost 40% on 2016.

As a result, the tour operator – which consists of three specialist brands, InsideJapan, InsideVietnam and InsideBurma - has decided to give something back to travel agents by increasing its standard commission by 2% for 2018.

AITO recently made the recommendation to its operator members to increase commission by 0.5%, a move welcomed by agents to help absorb some of the cost of credit card fees. The operator therefore took the commission review as an opportunity to re-evaluate its trade strategy and to work more with agents.

Matt Spiller, agent sales manager for the company, said: “Over the past two years we have seen agent turnover grow by almost 80% and we believe that agents are a key factor in the company’s growth. The decision to increase commission has huge financial implications for us and the decision has not been taken lightly, however, we believe it’s an important step to show our commitment to trade partnerships.”

Similarly in a move to further develop its commitment to travel agents, the company has increased its agents department. Spiller added: “Until last year I was InsideAsia’s only BDM on the road but demand for us to attend agent events and provide training has increased so much that we appointed a second BDM, Lawrence Pryer. It has been a very successful year for trade partnerships and we are very excited with what we have planned for trade partnerships in 2018 and beyond.”

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