VisitBritain Launches BritAgent Training Program in Qatar
The Scheme Aims to Equip the Travel Sector in Qatar with UK Knowledge
After the successful execution and delivery of the BritAgent online training program in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, VisitBritain is venturing again in the GCC and is launching the program today in Qatar at the British Embassy in Doha. Britain has always been a popular destination for tourists from Qatar, and VisitBritain wants to ensure that travel agents in Qatar are fully aware of all the attractions the UK has to offer so that they can help their customers capitalise on all available opportunities.
“Britain is already a major beneficiary of outbound travel from the Gulf region,”said Dubai-based Sumathi Ramanathan, APME Regional Manager of VisitBritain. “Visitors from the Gulf region are a major source of revenue for the United Kingdom; from January to September 2012, these visitors spent nearly AED 5.5 billion, already showing a 7% increase over 2011. From 2006 through 2011, Qatar has shown an outstanding increase in visitor numbers of 59 per cent and the spend per night significantly outshines all the other countries.”
The event will be attended by key decision makers from leading travel agencies in Qatar, as well as representatives from the Qatari media.The BritAgent Specialist Programme is VisitBritain’s global online training initiative and has been designed to meet the needs of travel trade ‘front-liners’from new starters to experienced sales personnel. The programme takes the form of an e-learning platform composed of three compulsory modules and additional optional modules, with a quiz at the end of each one. Once the agents have completed the programme, they will be granted BritAgent status, which signifies their expertise and knowledge about travel to Britain.
‘Britain the Basics’ is the theme of the first online module that gives an insight on the basic information and tools the travel agent needs to book and plan client’s visit to Britain. The second module identifies unique selling points of different countries that make up Britain. It takes an in-depth look into the key differences and product offerings each region offers, and how these can appeal to repeat visitors. The third module covers unique selling experiences that can satisfy the travel agent clients’ special interests and diverse lifestyles.
The journey of BritAgent doesn’t end with three modules, the content will be upgraded and updated periodically to continue the momentum of Britain among the BritAgent’s Specialists.
“The BritAgent Specialist Programme is both fun and challenging, with the idea being to instil knowledge about the UK into the participants so that they can advise customers about the best times to travel, the various cultural events taking place, the seasonal climate and the typical costs of everyday goods,” said Ramanathan. “Our research has shown that the better informed customers are about their destination prior to travel, the more enjoyable their experience when they get there,” she added.
The program that’s already available in the UAE, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia celebrates 464 BritAgent graduates to date.
- Ends -
· VisitBritain is Britain's national tourism agency, responsible for marketing Britain worldwide and developing Britain’s visitor economy. A non-departmental public body, funded by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, we work in partnership with thousands of organisations in the UK and overseas ― the Government, the industry and our strategic partners in London, England, Scotland and Wales ― and seek to ensure that Britain is marketed appropriately around the world.
· Our priority is to deliver a four-year match funded global marketing programme, working with the private sector, which takes advantage of the unique opportunity of the Royal Wedding, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the 2012 Games to showcase Britain and attract new visitors from the tourism growth markets of Asia and Latin America and to reinvigorate our appeal in core markets such as the USA, France and Germany. This campaign aims to attract four million extra visitors to Britain, who will spend an additional £2 billion over the four years.
· We also provide analysis and advice on the issues facing potential visitors, on Britain’s competitive position and the barriers to inbound tourism growth. This is in addition to providing research; market intelligence and analysis to inform the British tourism industry.
VisitBritainShop.com – buy before you fly
· The official shop of the British national tourist authority, VisitBritainShop.com has over 150 products on Britain including travel and transport, sightseeing tours and attraction tickets. A one-stop-shop enabling the planning and purchase of products before arrival, VisitBritainShop.com ensures customers spend their time in Britain enjoying it and not waiting in a queue.
· The VisitBritain shops are made up of 13 local-market websites giving customers the convenience of purchasing in their own currency and language. And with products and discounts exclusive to the international visitor and customer service support in 7 languages, planning a trip to Britain has never been easier.